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Process-level improvements in CMIP5 models and their impact on tropical variability, Southern Ocean and monsoons

Lauer, Axel and Jones, Colin and Eyring, Veronika and Evaldsson, Martin and Hagemann, Stefan and Mäkelä, Jarmo and Martin, Gill and Roehrig, Romain and Wang, Shiyu (2018) Process-level improvements in CMIP5 models and their impact on tropical variability, Southern Ocean and monsoons. Earth System Dynamics (9), pp. 33-67. Copernicus Publications. doi: 10.5194/esd-9-33-2018. ISSN 2190-4979.

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Official URL: https://www.earth-syst-dynam.net/9/33/2018/


The performance of updated versions of the four earth system models (ESMs) CNRM, EC-Earth, HadGEM, and MPI-ESM is assessed in comparison to their predecessor versions used in Phase 5 of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project. The Earth System Model Evaluation Tool (ESMValTool) is applied to evaluate selected climate phenomena in the models against observations. This is the first systematic application of the ESMValTool to assess and document the progress made during an extensive model development and improvement project. This study focuses on the South Asian (SAM) and West African (WAM) monsoons, the coupled equatorial climate, and Southern Ocean clouds and radiation, which are known to exhibit systematic biases in present-day ESMs. The analysis shows that the tropical precipitation in three out of four models is clearly improved. Two of three updated coupled models show an improved representation of tropical sea surface temperatures with one coupled model not exhibiting a double Inter-Tropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ). Simulated cloud amounts and cloud-radiation interactions are improved over the Southern Ocean. Improvements are also seen in the simulation of the SAM and WAM, although systematic biases remain in regional details and the timing of monsoon rainfall. Analysis of simulations with EC-Earth at different horizontal resolutions from T159 up to T1279 shows that the synoptic-scale variability of precipitation over the SAM and WAM regions improves with higher model resolution. The results suggest the reasonably good agreement of modeled and observed mean WAM and SAM rainfall in lower resolution models may be a result of unrealistic intensity distributions.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/116614/
Document Type:Article
Title:Process-level improvements in CMIP5 models and their impact on tropical variability, Southern Ocean and monsoons
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthor's ORCID iDORCID Put Code
Lauer, AxelDLR, IPAhttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-9270-1044UNSPECIFIED
Eyring, VeronikaDLR, IPAhttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-6887-4885UNSPECIFIED
Evaldsson, MartinSMHI, Norrköping, SchwedenUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Hagemann, StefanMPI für Meteorologie, HamburgUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Mäkelä, JarmoFMI, Helsinki, FinnlandUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Roehrig, RomainMétéo France and CNRS, Toulouse, FrankreichUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Date:January 2018
Journal or Publication Title:Earth System Dynamics
Refereed publication:Yes
Open Access:Yes
Gold Open Access:Yes
In ISI Web of Science:Yes
Page Range:pp. 33-67
Publisher:Copernicus Publications
Keywords:ESMValTool, CMIP, EMBRACE, climate model, bias
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport
HGF - Program:Space
HGF - Program Themes:Earth Observation
DLR - Research area:Raumfahrt
DLR - Program:R EO - Earth Observation
DLR - Research theme (Project):R - Atmospheric and climate research
Location: Oberpfaffenhofen
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Atmospheric Physics > Earth System Model Evaluation and Analysis
Deposited By: Lauer, Axel
Deposited On:05 Dec 2017 17:06
Last Modified:02 Nov 2023 12:05

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