Synoptic-to-Regional-Scale Analysis of Rainfall in the Atacama Desert (18°–26°S) Using a Long-Term Simulation with WRF

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Title:Main Title: Synoptic-to-Regional-Scale Analysis of Rainfall in the Atacama Desert (18°–26°S) Using a Long-Term Simulation with WRF
Description:Abstract: In this study, reanalysis data and a long-term simulation with the regional climate model WRF (1982–2017;10 km resolution) is used to analyze synoptic and regional processes associated with rainfall events in the Atacama Desert. Five composites, each with 10 WRF-simulated rainfall events, are studied. They are selected based on a clustering and comprise the top winter events in South Atacama (23–26S), Southeast Atacama, and North Atacama (18–23S), and the top summer events in North Atacama and Northeast Atacama. Winter rainfall events in South Atacama are mostly associated with strong low pressure systems over the southeast Pacific and atmospheric rivers at their foreside, while cutoff lows occurring anomalously far north facilitate strong rainfall in North Atacama. Accordingly, tropical continental areas and the remote tropical and subtropical Pacific are identified as primary moisture sources, and moisture transport toward the Atacama Desert mainly takes place in the free troposphere (above 800 hPa). Strong summer rainfall events in North Atacama and Northeast Atacama are associated with a southward displaced Bolivian high. During rainfall events in North Atacama the high is shifted westward when compared to the Northeast Atacama events. Consequently, northern Chile is located at the northern periphery of the Bolivian high and the resulting strong easterlies may push strong convective systems from the Altiplano, toward the Atacama coast. Detailed analyses of individual rainfall events reveal that the most important synoptic patterns associated with rainfall not only control the synoptic-scale moisture transport into the Atacama Desert, but also decisively influence the regional atmospheric circulation.
Identifier:10.1175/MWR-D-20-0038.1 (DOI)
Responsible Party
Creators:Mark Reyers (Author), Christoph Böhm (Author), Leon Knarr (Author), Yaping Shao (Author), Susanne Crewell (Author)
Publisher:American Meteorological Society
Publication Year:2021
CRC1211 Topic:Climate
Related Subprojects:A3, A1
Subject:Keyword: Climate Models
Geogr. Information Topic:Climatology/Meteorology/Atmosphere
File Details
Data Type:Data Paper - Publication
File Size:6.4 MB
Date:Available: 23.12.2020
Mime Type:application/pdf
Data Format:PDF
Download Permission:Free
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General Access and Use Conditions:According to the CRC1211DB data policy agreement.
Access Limitations:According to the CRC1211DB data policy agreement.
Specific Information - Publication
Publication Status:In Print
Review Status:Peer reviewed
Publication Type:Article
Article Type:Journal
Source:Monthly Weather Review
Source Website:
Number of Pages:22 (91 - 112)
Metadata Details
Metadata Creator:Rovina Pinto
Metadata Created:15.06.2021
Metadata Last Updated:30.11.2023
Funding Phase:2
Metadata Language:English
Metadata Version:V50
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Metadata Downloads:39
Dataset Downloads:8
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