Submitted as: development and technical paper
28 Sep 2023
Submitted as: development and technical paper |  | 28 Sep 2023
Status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal GMD.

Energy conserving physics for nonhydrostatic dynamics in mass coordinate models

Oksana Guba, Mark A. Taylor, Peter A. Bosler, Christopher Eldred, and Peter H. Lauritzen

Abstract. Motivated by reducing errors in the energy budget related to enthalpy fluxes with E3SM, we study several physics-dynamics coupling approaches. Using idealized physics, a moist rising bubble test case, and E3SM's nonhydrostatic dynamical core, we consider unapproximated and approximated thermodynamics applied at constant pressure or constant volume. Using timestep convergence studies, we show that the constant pressure update is more accurate at large timesteps despite being less consistent with the underlying equations. We reproduce the large inconsistencies between the energy flux internal to the model and the energy flux of precipitation when using approximate thermodynamics, which can only be removed by considering variable latent heats both when computing the latent heating from phase change as well as when applying this heating to update the temperature. Finally, we show that in the nonhydrostatic case, for physics applied at constant pressure, the general relation that enthalpy is locally conserved no longer holds. In this case, the conserved quantity is enthalpy plus an additional term proportional to the difference between the hydrostatic and full pressure.

Oksana Guba et al.

Status: final response (author comments only)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on gmd-2023-184', Thomas Bendall, 23 Oct 2023
  • RC2: 'Comment on gmd-2023-184', Anonymous Referee #2, 06 Nov 2023
  • RC3: 'Comment on gmd-2023-184', Anonymous Referee #3, 08 Nov 2023
  • RC4: 'Comment on gmd-2023-184', Anonymous Referee #4, 09 Nov 2023

Oksana Guba et al.

Oksana Guba et al.


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Short summary
We want to reduce errors in the moist energy budget in atmospheric models. We study a few common assumptions and mechanisms that are used for the moist physics. Some mechanisms are more consistent with underlying equations; other may be more practical. Separately, we study how assumptions about models' thermodynamics affect the modeled energy of precipitation. We also explain how to conserve energy in the moist physics for nonhydrostatic models.