Comparison of Modeled and Observed Accumulated Convective Precipitation in Mountainous and Flat Land Areas

Mladjen Ćurić, Dejan Janc
2011 Journal of Hydrometeorology  
Convective precipitation is the main cause of extreme rainfall events in small areas. Its primary characteristics are both large spatial and temporal variability. For this reason, the monitoring of accumulated precipitation fields (liquid and solid components) at the surface is difficult to carry out through the use of rain gauge networks or remote sensing observations. Alternatively, numerical models may be a useful tool to simulate convective precipitation for various analyses and
more » ... ses and predictions. This paper focuses on improving quantitative convective precipitation estimates that are obtained with a cloud-resolving model. This aim is attained by using the appropriate cloud drop size distribution and modified single sounding data. The authors perform comparisons between observations and three model samples of the areal-accumulated convective precipitation for a 15-yr period over mountainous and flat land areas with 45 and 29 convective events, respectively. They compare the results from a numerical cloud model that uses 2 different microphysical schemes-the unified Khrgian-Mazin size distribution of cloud drops-and an alternative scheme that is a combination of a monodispersed cloud droplet spectrum and the Marshall-Palmer size distribution for raindrops. The authors' statistical analysis shows that the model version with the Khrgian-Mazin size distribution and the new initial conditions better simulates the observed areal-accumulated convective precipitation than the alternative microphysical approach for both study areas. The model simulations with the Khrgian-Mazin size distribution most closely match observations for the flat land area with a correlation coefficient of 0.94, while it is somewhat lower (0.89) for the mountainous area. Use of the alternative microphysical approach, on the other hand, underestimates the observed precipitation, and has the lowest correlation coefficient among the methods, 0.82 for the mountainous area and 0.85 for the flat land. FIG. 11. Scatter diagrams of predicted ACPs (mm) vs their observed counterparts for rain gauge stations Zlatibor and Sjenica in study area 1: (a) KM10, (b) KM50, and (c) MMP microphysical schemes. Also presented are n, r, and bias.
doi:10.1175/2010jhm1259.1 fatcat:zrp3psdot5dbxafjhs5uhidecq