An approximate energy cycle for inter-member variability in ensemble simulations of a regional climate model

Nikiéma, Oumarou et Laprise, René (2013). « An approximate energy cycle for inter-member variability in ensemble simulations of a regional climate model ». Climate Dynamics, 41(3-4), pp. 831-852.

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The presence of internal variability (IV) in ensembles of nested regional climate model (RCM) simulations is now widely acknowledged in the community working on dynamical downscaling. IV is defined as the inter-member spread between members in an ensemble of simulations performed by a given RCM driven by identical lateral boundary conditions (LBC), where different members are being initialised at different times. The physical mechanisms responsible for the time variations and structure of such IV have only recently begun to receive attention. Recent studies have shown empirical evidence of a close parallel between the energy conversions associated with the time fluctuations of IV in ensemble simulations of RCM and the energy conversions taking place in weather systems. Inspired by the classical work on global energetics of weather systems, we sought a formulation of an energy cycle for IV that would be applicable for limited-area domain. We develop here a novel formalism based on local energetics that can be applied to further our understanding IV. Prognostic equations for ensemble-mean kinetic energy and available enthalpy are decomposed into contributions due to ensemble-mean variables (EM) and those due to deviations from the ensemble mean (IV). Together these equations constitute an energy cycle for IV in ensemble simulations of RCM. Although the energy cycle for IV was developed in a context entirely different from that of energetics of weather systems, the exchange terms between the various reservoirs have a rather similar mathematical form, which facilitates some interpretations of their physical meaning.

Type: Article de revue scientifique
Mots-clés ou Sujets: Inter-member variability, Internal variability, Atmospheric energy cycle, Regional climate models, Ensemble of simulations
Unité d'appartenance: Faculté des sciences > Département des sciences de la Terre et de l'atmosphère
Déposé par: René Laprise
Date de dépôt: 01 avr. 2016 18:02
Dernière modification: 25 avr. 2016 15:39
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