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Distribution and influence of convection in the tropical tropopause region - Gettelman - 2002 - Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres - Wiley Online Library

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Climate and Dynamics

Distribution and influence of convection in the tropical tropopause region



[1] A global analysis of convective cloud in the tropical tropopause region (12–17 km) is presented. The analysis is based on high-resolution global imagery of cloud brightness temperatures from satellites and from contemporaneous reanalysis temperatures. The coverage by deep convection decreases nearly exponentially with increasing altitude in the tropopause region. Convection is found at temperatures colder than the tropical cold point tropopause over ∼0.5% (±0.25%) of the tropics. Convection rarely penetrates more than 1.5 km above the tropopause. Large-scale relationships between cold tropopause temperatures and deep convection indicate that where the tropopause is coldest convection penetrates most frequently. Small-scale relationships show that the coldest diurnal tropopause temperatures occur after the diurnal peak in deep convection at tropopause levels over land. The coverage by deep convection is used to estimate the mass exchange or turnover time due to convection in the tropopause region. This turnover time is of the order of weeks at 12 km but increases to longer than a year at 18 km, with significant uncertainties in the tropopause region.

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Copyright 2002 by the American Geophysical Union.

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  • tropical convection;
  • stratosphere-troposphere exchange

Publication History

  • Issue online: 21 May 2002
  • Version of record online: 21 May 2002
  • Manuscript Accepted: 28 September 2001
  • Manuscript Revised: 26 September 2001
  • Manuscript Received: 25 June 2001

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  1. 1A. Hemanth Kumar, M. Venkat Ratnam, S.V. Sunilkumar, K. Parameswaran, B.V. Krishna Murthy, Cross tropopause flux observed at sub-daily scales over the south Indian monsoon regions, Atmospheric Research, 2018, 201, 72CrossRef
  2. 2Shipra Jain, A. R. Jain, T. K. Mandal, Appearance of the persistently low tropopause temperature and ozone over the Bay of Bengal region, Meteorology and Atmospheric Physics, 2017CrossRef
  3. 3S. V. Sunilkumar, M. Muhsin, M. Venkat Ratnam, K. Parameswaran, B. V. Krishna Murthy, Maria Emmanuel, Boundaries of tropical tropopause layer (TTL): A new perspective based on thermal and stability profiles, Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, 2017, 122, 2, 741Wiley Online Library
  4. 4Subrata Kumar Das, R.B. Golhait, K.N. Uma, Clouds vertical properties over the Northern Hemisphere monsoon regions from CloudSat-CALIPSO measurements, Atmospheric Research, 2017, 183, 73CrossRef
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  9. 9Sarah M. Griffin, Kristopher M. Bedka, Christopher S. Velden, A Method for Calculating the Height of Overshooting Convective Cloud Tops Using Satellite-Based IR Imager andCloudSatCloud Profiling Radar Observations, Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology, 2016, 55, 2, 479CrossRef
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  11. 11Nana Liu, Chuntao Liu, Global distribution of deep convection reaching tropopause in 1 year GPM observations, Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, 2016, 121, 8, 3824Wiley Online Library
  12. 12Peter E. Marshall, Mike Widdowson, David T. Murphy, The Giant Lavas of Kalkarindji: rubbly pāhoehoe lava in an ancient continental flood basalt province, Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 2016, 441, 22CrossRef
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  14. 14Tao Xian, Yunfei Fu, Characteristics of tropopause-penetrating convection determined by TRMM and COSMIC GPS radio occultation measurements, Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, 2015, 120, 14, 7006Wiley Online Library
  15. 15Katrina S. Virts, Robert A. Houze, Clouds and Water Vapor in the Tropical Tropopause Transition Layer over Mesoscale Convective Systems, Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences, 2015, 72, 12, 4739CrossRef
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  18. 18Rei Ueyama, Eric J. Jensen, Leonhard Pfister, Ji-Eun Kim, Dynamical, convective, and microphysical control on wintertime distributions of water vapor and clouds in the tropical tropopause layer, Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres, 2015, 120, 19, 10,483Wiley Online Library
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  20. 20A. Hemanth Kumar, M. Venkat Ratnam, S.V. Sunilkumar, K. Parameswaran, B.V. Krishna Murthy, Role of deep convection on the tropical tropopause characteristics at sub-daily scales over the South India monsoon region, Atmospheric Research, 2015, 161-162, 14CrossRef

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