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Annales Geophysicae An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 15, issue 4
Ann. Geophys., 15, 487–493, 1997
© European Geosciences Union 1997
Ann. Geophys., 15, 487–493, 1997
© European Geosciences Union 1997

  30 Apr 1997

30 Apr 1997

Evidence for the role of the diabatic heating in synoptic scale processes: a case study example

M. L. Martin, M. Y. Luna, and F. Valero M. L. Martin et al.
  • Dpto. Astrofísica y CC. de la Atmósfera, Facultad de CC. Fisícas, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, 28040 Madrid, Spain

Abstract. The quasigeostrophic theory is used to address the role of diabatic forcing in synoptic scale processes over Iberia. A parametrization of diabatic heating is obtained in terms of a thermodynamic variable called the ice-liquid water potential temperature which is conservative under all phase changes of water. A case study objectively selected by means of a rotated principal component analysis over the diabatic field is analyzed to test the proposed parametrization. This study highlights the fact that the magnitudes of diabatic forcing and dynamic forcing are very nearly the same throughout the troposphere. The results also show that the composite diabatic heating is a better representation for both cloudiness and precipitation fields than the dynamic forcing.

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