MASS Seminar – Graham Feingold – On Rabbits, Foxes, Clouds, And Precipitation

Monday October 1, 2012 8:00 am

Speaker’s Website: Host: Daniel Rothenberg Title: On Rabbits, Foxes, Clouds, and Precipitation Abstract: Our ability to predict future climate states is significantly hampered by our inability to represent small-scale (order 100 m) processes associated with aerosol particles, clouds and precipitation in climate models. The complexity of the aerosol-cloud-precipitation system has driven process-level model development that attempts to capture as much of the coupled physics as possible, but at considerable computational expense. While these represent important benchmarks for the system, they are far too expensive to be incorporated in climate models. In the spirit of the pioneering work of Edward Lorenz, I will show that this system exhibits emergence that in some cases can be described by simple non-linear mathematical models. I will present examples of different dynamical states of the marine boundary layer cloud system revealed by the simplified equation set and compare to rigorous large eddy simulation.