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Cloud droplets growth due to supersaturation fluctuations in stratiform clouds
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Meteorology . Stockholm University, Nordic Institute for Theoretical Physics (Nordita). Swedish e-Science Research Centre, Sweden; University of Colorado, USA.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5722-0018
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Meteorology . Swedish e-Science Research Centre, Sweden; National Center for Atmospheric Research, USA.
Stockholm University, Nordic Institute for Theoretical Physics (Nordita). Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Astronomy. University of Colorado, USA.
(English)In: Article in journal (Refereed) Submitted
Abstract [en]

Condensational growth of cloud droplets due to supersaturation fluctuations is investigated by solving the hydrodynamic and thermodynamic equations using direct numerical simulations with droplets being modeled as Lagrangian particles. We find that the width of droplet size distributions increases with time, which is contrary to the classical theory without supersaturation fluctuations, where condensational growth leads to progressively narrower size distributions. Nevertheless, in agreement with earlier Lagrangian stochastic models of the condensational growth, the standard deviation of the surface area of droplets increases as t^(1/2) . Also, we numerically confirm that the time evolution of the size distribution depends strongly on the Reynolds number and only weakly on the mean energy dissipation rate. This is shown to be due to the fact that temperature fluctuations and water vapor mixing ratio fluctuations increases with increasing Reynolds number, therefore the resulting supersaturation fluctuations are enhanced with increasing Reynolds number. Our simulations may explain the broadening of the size distribution in stratiform clouds qualitatively, where the updraft velocity is almost zero.

National Category
Climate Research
Research subject
Atmospheric Sciences and Oceanography
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-158536OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-158536DiVA, id: diva2:1237407
Funder
Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation, Dnr. KAW 2014.0048The Research Council of Norway, FRINATEK grant 231444Swedish Research Council, 2012-5797 and 2013-03992Available from: 2018-08-08 Created: 2018-08-08 Last updated: 2018-08-09
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arXiv:1806.10529

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