Articles | Volume 16, issue 14
Development and technical paper
26 Jul 2023
Development and technical paper |  | 26 Jul 2023

Breakups are complicated: an efficient representation of collisional breakup in the superdroplet method

Emily de Jong, John Ben Mackay, Oleksii Bulenok, Anna Jaruga, and Sylwester Arabas

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Cited articles

Andrejczuk, M., Reisner, J. M., Henson, B., Dubey, M. K., and Jeffery, C. A.: The potential impacts of pollution on a nondrizzling stratus deck: Does aerosol number matter more than type?, J. Geophys. Res.-Atmos., 113, D19204,, 2008. a
Andrejczuk, M., Grabowski, W. W., Reisner, J., and Gadian, A.: Cloud-aerosol interactions for boundary layer stratocumulus in the Lagrangian Cloud Model, J. Geophys. Res.-Atmos., 115, D22214,, 2010. a
Arabas, S., Jaruga, A., Pawlowska, H., and Grabowski, W. W.: libcloudph++ 1.0: a single-moment bulk, double-moment bulk, and particle-based warm-rain microphysics library in C++, Geosci. Model Dev., 8, 1677–1707,, 2015. a
Arabas, S., Bartman, P., de Jong, E., Singer, C., Olesik, M. A., Mackay, B., Bulenok, O., Azimi, S., Górski, K., Jaruga, A., Piasecki, B., and Badger, C.: atmos-cloud-sim-uj/PySDM: PySDM v2.12, Zenodo [code],, 2022. a
Arabas, S., Azimi, S., Bartman, P., Bulenok, O., de Jong, E., Derlatka, K., Dula, I., Górski, K., Jaruga, A., Łazarski, G., Mackay, J. B., Olesik, M., Piasecki, B., Singer, C. E., Talar, A., and Ward, R. X.: PySDM (v2.20), Zenodo [code],, 2023a. a
Short summary
In clouds, collisional breakup occurs when two colliding droplets splinter into new, smaller fragments. Particle-based modeling approaches often do not represent breakup because of the computational demands of creating new droplets. We present a particle-based breakup method that preserves the computational efficiency of these methods. In a series of simple demonstrations, we show that this representation alters cloud processes in reasonable and expected ways.