Recent publications

Moisture patches

Moist patches are areas in the subcloud layer characterized by a positive water vapor anomaly compared to the environment and are considered important in triggering new convective cells. A correct understanding of the origin of the water vapor in these patches is, thus, essential to improving existing convective parameterizations. Recent studies have addressed this problem and have shown that contrary to what was previously thought, the main source of water vapor in moist patches are surface latent heat fluxes, instead of rain evaporation. This manuscript offers a different perspective to the topic, focusing on the origin only of the water vapor that makes moist patches anomalously moist when compared to the environment. It is found that near the surface, rain evaporation contributes half as much as latent heat fluxes, implying that a parameterization of the thermodynamic forcing should be more sensitive to environmental variables, like relative humidity, than recently suggested.

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