Accessibility navigation

Accounting for the three-dimensional nature of mountain waves: parametrizing partial critical level filtering

van Niekerk, A., Vosper, S. B. and Teixeira, M. A. C. ORCID: (2023) Accounting for the three-dimensional nature of mountain waves: parametrizing partial critical level filtering. Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society, 149 (751). pp. 515-536. ISSN 1477-870X

Text - Accepted Version
· Please see our End User Agreement before downloading.


It is advisable to refer to the publisher's version if you intend to cite from this work. See Guidance on citing.

To link to this item DOI: 10.1002/qj.4421


Gravity waves generated by mountains are multi-scale and three-dimensional. Current orographic gravity wave drag parametrization schemes assume that the waves are two-dimensional, varying only in the vertical and along one horizontal direction. These schemes, therefore, do not represent the process of partial critical level filtering, whereby a portion of the wave spectrum is saturated where the winds parallel to the wavevectors become small. This results in an unrealistic vertical distribution of the momentum flux and forcing of the waves on the mean flow. In this work, a method of accounting for partial critical level filtering in an orographic gravity wave drag parametrization using the full spectrum of realistic topography is presented. This is achieved through binning of the expression for linear hydrostatic surface stresses, computed using Fourier transforms of the subgrid orographic heights within model gridboxes, into wavevector directions. The parametrization is compared with idealised nonlinear simulations of flow over complex topography and is shown to perform well as the number of wavevector direction bins is increased. Implementation of the scheme into the Met Office Unified model is tested using short-range 5-day forecasts. As is found from idealised simulations, the binned scheme leads to less forcing in the troposphere and increased forcing in the stratosphere within the model. The binned scheme is shown to alleviate biases in the upper stratosphere, between 45 km and 65 km, as well as having significant local effects in the troposphere.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Science > School of Mathematical, Physical and Computational Sciences > Department of Meteorology
ID Code:109607
Uncontrolled Keywords:Gravity wave drag, orography, parametrization, numerical weather prediction, climate modelling, stratosphere
Publisher:Royal Meteorological Society


Downloads per month over past year

University Staff: Request a correction | Centaur Editors: Update this record

Page navigation