Development and evaluation of a bulk three-moment parameterization scheme incorporating the processes of sedimentation and collision-coalescence

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Lainer Donet
Lester Alfonso


There are a few three-moment schemes that consider other processes besides sedimentation. Thus, a performance assessment of these types of schemes due to the combined effect of sedimentation and other microphysical processes is a matter of interest. In this study, a warm rain bulk three-moment parameterized scheme was developed and evaluated through a detailed comparison with a bin microphysical scheme. To evaluate the impact of sedimentation and the combined effect of sedimentation and collision-coalescence on the droplet size distribution (DSD), a rain shaft model was applied to the DSD with different initial values of the shape parameter. For pure sedimentation, a good correspondence was obtained between the three-moment scheme and the explicit model, with a practically perfect coincidence of bulk quantities for larger values of the gamma distribution’s initial shape parameter and, in general, the three-moment parameterization scheme performing much better than the two-moment scheme. The simulations performed for this case confirm (as reported in previous studies) that for pure sedimentation, the three-moment parameterization schemes deliver a physically more complete representation of the evolution of droplet size distribution. The impact of the combined effect of sedimentation and collision-coalescence processes on DSD was also assessed. We could observe that certain differences arise between the parameterized scheme and the spectral model when the collision-coalescence process is incorporated, as the onset of precipitation occurs earlier in the three-moment parameterized scheme. It can be concluded that, in general, the three-moment warm rain bulk microphysics scheme is able to reproduce the results of the reference bin microphysical model.


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