Model development in practice: A comprehensive update to the boundary layer schemes in HARMONIE-AROME cycle 40

Wim C. De Rooy*, Pier Siebesma, Peter Baas, Geert Lenderink, Stephan R. De Roode, Hylke De Vries, Erik Van Meijgaard, Jan Fokke Meirink, Sander Tijm, Bram Van't Veen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

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Abstract

The parameterised description of subgrid-scale processes in the clear and cloudy boundary layer has a strong impact on the performance skill in any numerical weather prediction (NWP) or climate model and is still a prime source of uncertainty. Yet, improvement of this parameterised description is hard because operational models are highly optimised and contain numerous compensating errors. Therefore, improvement of a single parameterised aspect of the boundary layer often results in an overall deterioration of the model as a whole. In this paper, we will describe a comprehensive integral revision of three parameterisation schemes in the High Resolution Local Area Modelling - Aire Limitée Adaptation dynamique Développement InterNational (HIRLAM-ALADIN) Research on Mesoscale Operational NWP In Europe - Applications of Research to Operations at Mesoscale (HARMONIE-AROME) model that together parameterise the boundary layer processes: the cloud scheme, the turbulence scheme, and the shallow cumulus convection scheme. One of the major motivations for this revision is the poor representation of low clouds in the current model cycle. The newly revised parametric descriptions provide an improved prediction not only of low clouds but also of precipitation. Both improvements can be related to a stronger accumulation of moisture under the atmospheric inversion. The three improved parameterisation schemes are included in a recent update of the HARMONIE-AROME configuration, but its description and the insights in the underlying physical processes are of more general interest as the schemes are based on commonly applied frameworks. Moreover, this work offers an interesting look behind the scenes of how parameterisation development requires an integral approach and a delicate balance between physical realism and pragmatism.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1513-1543
Number of pages31
JournalGeoscientific Model Development
Volume15
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2022

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