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Reexamining the Nonlinear Moisture-Precipitation Relationship Over the Tropical Oceans

Cited 60 time in Web of Science Cited 64 time in Scopus

Rushley, S.S.; Kim, D.; Bretherton, C.S.; Ahn, M.-S.

Issue Date
American Geophysical Union
Geophysical Research Letters, Vol.45 No.2, pp.1133-1140
Bretherton et al. (2004) used the Special Sensor Microwave Imager (SSM/I) version 5 product to derive an exponential curve that describes the relationship between precipitation and column relative humidity (CRH) over the tropical oceans. The curve, which features a precipitation pickup at a CRH of about 0.75 and a rapid increase of precipitation with CRH after the pickup, has been widely used in the studies of the tropical atmosphere. This study reexamines the moisture-precipitation relationship by using the version 7 SSM/I data, in which several biases in the previous version are corrected, and evaluates the relationship in the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project phase 5 (CMIP5) models. In the revised exponential curve derived using the updated satellite data, the precipitation pickup occurs at a higher CRH (~0.8), and precipitation increases more slowly with CRH than in the previous curve. In most CMIP5 models, the precipitation pickup is too early due to the common model bias of overestimated (underestimated) precipitation in the dry (wet) regime.
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Related Researcher

  • College of Natural Sciences
  • Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences
Research Area Climate Change, Earth & Environmental Data, Severe Weather, 기후과학, 위험기상, 지구환경 데이터과학


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