Implications of Lagrangian transport for simulations with a coupled chemistry-climate model
- Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt (DLR), Institut für Physik der Atmosphäre, Oberpfaffenhofen, Germany
Abstract. For the first time a purely Lagrangian transport algorithm is applied in a fully coupled chemistry-climate model (CCM). We use the numerically non-diffusive Lagrangian scheme ATTILA instead of the operational semi-Lagrangian scheme for the transport of water vapour, cloud water and chemical trace species in the CCM E39C. The new model version including the Lagrangian scheme is referred to as E39C-A. The implications of the Lagrangian transport scheme for stratospheric model dynamics and tracer distributions in E39C-A are evaluated by comparison with observations and results of the previous model version E39C. We found in a previous paper that several deficiencies in stratospheric dynamics in E39C originate from a pronounced modelled wet bias and an associated cold bias in the extra-tropical lowermost stratosphere. Contrary to the semi-Lagrangian scheme ATTILA shows a largely reduced meridional transport of water vapour from the tropical upper troposphere into the extratropical lowermost stratosphere. The reduction of the moisture and temperature bias in E39C-A leads to a significant advancement of stratospheric dynamics in terms of the mean state as well as annual and interannual variability. In this study we show that as a consequence of both, the favourable numerical characteristics of the Lagrangian transport scheme and the improved model dynamics, E39C-A generally shows more realistic distributions of chemical trace species: Compared to E39C high stratospheric chlorine (Cly) concentrations extend further downward. Therefore E39C-A realistically covers the altitude of maximum ozone depletion in the stratosphere. The location of the ozonopause, i.e. the transition from low tropospheric to high stratospheric ozone values, is also clearly improved in E39C-A. Not only the spatial distribution but also the temporal evolution of stratospheric Cly in the past is realistically reproduced in E39C-A which is an important step towards a more reliable projection of future changes, especially of stratospheric ozone. Despite a large number of improvements there are still remaining model deficiencies like a general overestimation of total column ozone.