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The role of nocturnal Low-Level-Jet in nocturnal convection and rainfalls in the west Mediterranean coast: the episode of 14 December 2010 in northeast of Iberian Peninsula

DOI: 10.5194/asr-8-27-2012

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Abstract:

The night of 14 December 2010 radar images of the Spanish Weather Agency recorded a large rain band that moved offshore at the Northeast coast of the Iberian Peninsula. MM5 mesoscale model is used to study the atmospheric dynamics during that day. A Nocturnal Low Level Jet (NLLJ) generated by an inertial oscillation that brings cold air to the coast from inland has been simulated in the area. This cold air interacts with a warmer air mass some kilometers offshore. According to the MM5 mesoscale model simulation, the cold air enhances upward movements of the warm air producing condensation. Additionally, there is a return flow to the coastline at 600–900 m high. This warm air mass interacts again with the cold air moving downslope, also producing condensation inland. The simulation for the night before this episode shows large drainage winds with a NLLJ profile, but no condensation areas. The night after the 14th the simulation also shows drainage winds but without a NLLJ profile. However, an offshore convergence area was produced with a returned flow, but no condensation inland occurred. This fact is in agreement with radar observations which reported no precipitation for these two days. Consequently, NLLJ in combination with a synoptic wind over the sea could enhance condensation and eventually precipitation rates in the Mediterranean Iberian coast.

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