ASP Summer Colloquium 2012


The Weather-Climate Intersection: Advances and Challenges

June 4-22, 2012, Boulder, Colorado, USA


Mitch Moncrieff(NCAR), Lance Bosart, (SUNY/Albany), George Kiladis (NOAA/ESRL)


Climate model development during the past two decades has been dominated by the improvement in the coupling of major components of the Earth system (e.g., atmosphere, ocean, land, cryosphere, chemistry, and biogeochemistry) in order to better project climate change.  As our reliance on climate models grows, as has happened with weather prediction models, the next-generation of climate models must include complexity across a much broader range of scales in order to address regional variability. Meeting these objectives will require: 1) climate models that incorporate significantly higher spatial and temporal scales and areas where mesoscale processes at subseasonal time scales (10-90 days) are key elements of variability and predictability, and 2) a better understanding of the physical mechanisms that govern tropical-midlatitude and midlatitude-polar interactions on subseasonal time scales, the associated structure and evolution of the subtropical and polar front jets (STJ, PFJ), interactions with lower frequency tropical waves such as the Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO), and the principal storm tracks. Furthermore, the exponential growth of computer power over the recent decade implies a paradigm shift in thinking at the weather-climate intersection. Non-hydrostatic global cloud-system (mesoscale) resolving models are becoming more commonplace, and climate models are now run routinely in short-term weather prediction mode.  Rather than obviating convective parameterization, however, the next-generation of global climate models (i.e., those with 10 km or finer computational mesh), calls for a rethinking of our approach to such parameterization. The subseasonal timescale provides some unique and actionable opportunities in regard to an integration of theoretical, computational and observational expertise. The colloquium will emphasize both the observational and the theoretical basis for subseasonal multiscale interactions, and discuss the implications for the development of numerical modeling techniques. 

Researcher Colloquium:

In conjunction with the ASP colloquium, during week 2, there will be a Researcher Colloquium with a focus on organized tropical convection, the MJO, convectively coupled equatorial waves (CCEWs), and associated extratropical intraseasonal variablity. A primary focus will be on the impact of heating anomalies associated with this tropical convection on midlatitude flow anomalies and associated extreme weather occurrences. Topics will include the structure and amplitude of the STJ and PFJ, the influence of recurving and transitioning tropical cyclones on downstream baroclinic development, generation of Rossby wave trains by tropical heating, and the physical processes governing large-scale regime changes manifest through atmospheric teleconnections such as the Arctic Oscillation (AO) and the Pacific-North American (PNA) pattern.


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Visitors are welcome to attend any lectures in the colloquium but are asked to refrain from extensive participation in discussions.

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