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A Numerical Study of a Mesoscale Convective System during TOGA COARE. Part II: Organization



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1000 MONTHLY WEATHER REVIEW VOLUME 132 A Numerical Study of a Mesoscale Convective System during TOGA COARE Part II Organization BADRINATH NAGARAJAN AND M K YAU Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences McGill University Montreal Quebec Canada DA LIN ZHANG Department of Meteorology University of Maryland College Park College Park Maryland Manuscript received 17 April 2003 in final form 17 October 2003 ABSTRACT In Part I the authors presented a successful numerical simulation of the life cycle of a warm pool mesoscale convective system MCS that occurred on 15 December 1992 during the Tropical Ocean Global Atmosphere Coupled Ocean Atmosphere Response Experiment In this study the simulation results of Part I are diagnosed to investigate the organization of the MCS and the convective onsets that occurred during the growing and mature stages of the MCS During the life cycle of the MCS four convective onsets occur in the presence of large scale ascent convective available potential energy CAPE and surface potential temperature drop off SPTD It is found that the first convective onset is caused by the existence of upward motion CAPE and SPTD in the model initial conditions The second convective onset is regulated by the favorable occurrence of SPTD The third and fourth convective onsets arise from the development of upward motion associated with the westward propagation of the quasi 2day wave The four mesoscale precipitation features clustered together to form the MCS in response to the evolution of the vertical motion field The organization of the MCS is characterized by the presence of a midtropospheric mesovortex situated near the position of the first convective onset Analysis of the relative vorticity RV budget indicates that the mesovortex originates and intensifies largely from vortex stretching induced by deep convective heating A decrease in RV above below the mesovortex arises because of the combined effects of the tilting and horizontal advection terms the



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