Journal of the Meteorological Society of Japan. Ser. II
Online ISSN : 2186-9057
Print ISSN : 0026-1165
ISSN-L : 0026-1165
The Effect of Back-Reflection in the Parameterization of Non-Orographic Gravity-Wave Drag
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2002 Volume 80 Issue 4B Pages 939-962


An efficient method of solution is developed for the Warner and McIntyre parameterization of the drag associated with nonhydrostatic non-orographic inertia-gravity waves. The scheme is sufficiently fast as to enable, for the first time, fully interactive multi-year climate simulations that include the effects of rotation and nonhydrostatic wave dynamics in the parameterization of non-orographic gravity wave drag. It is found that the new scheme alleviates much of the middle-atmosphere wind biases that occur in the Canadian Middle Atmosphere Model when either of its two operational hydrostatic nonorographic gravity wave drag parameterizations are used.
The addition of the nonhydrostatic process of back-reflection has an important impact on the amount momentum flux launched into the stratosphere by the parameterization scheme. This quantity is a free parameter in the problem and it is specified here to be independent of time and geographic location. However, due to back-reflection, the net momentum flux that actually enters the stratosphere undergoes a systematic seasonal and latitudinal variation which is a consequence of the seasonal and latitudinal variation of the winds and temperatures in the middle atmosphere. This strong influence results in a characteristic latitudinal distribution for the net momentum flux entering the stratosphere in winter and summer. During these seasons, mid- to high-latitude launch momentum flux that is directed oppositely to the mesospheric jet can be reduced by as much as 75% due to back-reflection. The momentum flux launched into the stratosphere at tropical latitudes, however, is relatively unaffected by backreflection. This has important implications for the forcing of tropical oscillations such as the semi-annual oscillation and the quasi-biennial oscillation in general circulation models.

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© 2002 by Meteorological Society of Japan
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