Articles | Volume 30, issue 9
Regular paper
28 Sep 2012
Regular paper |  | 28 Sep 2012

Observation of a tropopause fold by MARA VHF wind-profiler radar and ozonesonde at Wasa, Antarctica: comparison with ECMWF analysis and a WRF model simulation

M. Mihalikova, S. Kirkwood, J. Arnault, and D. Mikhaylova

Abstract. Tropopause folds are one of the mechanisms of stratosphere–troposphere exchange, which can bring ozone rich stratospheric air to low altitudes in the extra-tropical regions. They have been widely studied at northern mid- or high latitudes, but so far almost no studies have been made at mid- or high southern latitudes. The Moveable Atmospheric Radar for Antarctica (MARA), a 54.5 MHz wind-profiler radar, has operated at the Swedish summer station Wasa, Antarctica (73° S, 13.5° W) during austral summer seasons from 2007 to 2011 and has observed on several occasions signatures similar to those caused by tropopause folds at comparable Arctic latitudes. Here a case study is presented of one of these events when an ozonesonde successfully sampled the fold. Analysis from European Center for Medium Range Weather Forecasting (ECMWF) is used to study the circumstances surrounding the event, and as boundary conditions for a mesoscale simulation using the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model. The fold is well resolved by the WRF simulation, and occurs on the poleward side of the polar jet stream. However, MARA resolves fine-scale layering associated with the fold better than the WRF simulation.