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Inclusion of a katabatic wind correction in a coarse-resolution global coupled climate model
Barthélemy, A.; Goosse, H.; Mathiot, P.; Fichefet, T. (2012). Inclusion of a katabatic wind correction in a coarse-resolution global coupled climate model. Ocean Modelling 48: 45-54.
In: Ocean Modelling. Elsevier: Oxford. ISSN 1463-5003; e-ISSN 1463-5011, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in  Authors 
    VLIZ: Open Repository 279312 [ OMA ]

Author keywords
    Katabatic winds; Sea ice; Antarctic; Southern Ocean; Deep water; Climatemodel

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    A correction for katabatic winds and polar easterlies is developed to deal with their dramatic underestimation by the atmospheric component of a coarse-resolution global coupled climate model. This correction relies on a comparison of the atmospheric surface circulation simulated by the model with the one provided by a regional atmospheric model, and consists of wind stress modifications in the vicinity of the Antarctic coast. Corrections are spatially varying and different for both wind components. The impacts of the correction on the modelled Antarctic sea ice and World Ocean's properties on long timescales are assessed, showing that katabatic winds thin sea ice and strongly enhance its production along the continent. Consequently, the formation rate, salinity and temperature of the Antarctic Bottom Water are increased. This leads to model results in better agreement with observations, especially in the deep ocean where the mean errors in temperature and salinity decrease by 9% and 37%, respectively. Hence, correcting katabatic winds seems to be an appropriate way to improve the representation of sea ice-related surface processes around Antarctica.

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