Finite-volume models with implicit subgrid-scale parameterization for the differentially heated rotating annulus

Sebastian Borchert, Ulrich Achatz, Sebastian Remmler, Stefan Hickel, Uwe Harlander, Miklos Vincze, Kiril D. Alexandrov, Felix Rieper, Tobias Heppelmann, Stamen I. Dolaptchiev

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


The differentially heated rotating annulus is a classical experiment for the investigation of baroclinic flows and can be regarded as a strongly simplified laboratory model of the atmosphere in mid-latitudes. Data of this experiment, measured at the BTU Cottbus-Senftenberg, are used to validate two numerical finite-volume models (INCA and cylFloit) which differ basically in their grid structure. Both models employ an implicit parameterization of the subgrid-scale turbulence by the Adaptive Local Deconvolution Method (ALDM). One part of the laboratory procedure, which is commonly neglected in simulations, is the annulus spin-up. During this phase the annulus is accelerated from a state of rest to a desired angular velocity. We use a simple modelling approach of the spin-up to investigate whether it increases the agreement between experiment and simulation. The model validation compares the azimuthal mode numbers of the baroclinic waves and does a principal component analysis of time series of the temperature field. The Eady model of baroclinic instability provides a guideline for the qualitative understanding of the observations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)561-580
Number of pages20
JournalMeteorologische Zeitschrift
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Baroclinic waves
  • Differentially heated rotating annulus
  • Finite-volume models
  • Implicit subgrid-scale parameterization
  • Principal component analysis

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