An international team of climate scientists led by the University of East Anglia will measure for the first time the influence of the atmosphere over Greenland and Iceland on the weather in Northern Europe.
The mountainous region at the southern tip of Greenland produces hurricane-strength ‘tip jets’, ‘barrier winds’ and ‘mesoscale cyclones’ which ‘force’ the overturning of the ocean. The atmosphere here also impacts on weather downstream in the UK some three to four days later. The experiment will make detailed measurements of weather features that are influenced by the flow around Greenland. For example, small cyclones known as ‘polar lows’ can sometimes produce heavy snow in North-West Europe.
The pioneering research led by Dr Ian Renfrew of UEA’s School of Environmental Sciences comes at the start of the International Polar Year which begins on March 1 and is launched in the UK by HRH the Princess Royal on Feb 26.
“In Britain we tend to view medium-range weather forecasts with a certain scepticism, so it is very exciting to be part of a project which could significantly improve their accuracy,” said Dr Renfrew.
“Though we have suspected for several years that the mountainous presence of Greenland has a strong influence over our own weather, this will be the first time that its impact has been observed.”
This will be the first time that this area has been targeted with additional meteorological observations aimed at improving subsequent weather forecasts.
Richard Swinbank, who is leading the Met Office team, said: “We will identify areas where additional targeted observations should be particularly beneficial, and afterwards we will check the benefit that the extra observations had on our forecasts.”
The intention is that this targeting will help to improve forecast quality during the experiment, and also help with designing the observational networks of the future.
As well as improving predictions of UK weather, the research will also fill in missing gaps in the existing climate change models, such as those used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in its major report on February 2. This will help to improve both the accuracy and the long-term range of climate change predictions.
From February 21 to March 10 the researchers will take to the skies over Greenland in a specially adapted aircraft, supplied by the Facility for Airborne Atmospheric Measurements (FAAM), to conduct the Greenland Flow Distortion Experiment (GFDex) experiment. The team includes scientists from the UK, Canada, Norway, Iceland and the US. The UK Met Office is a project partner and the research is funded by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC).
GPM sees deadly tornadic storms moving through US Southeast
01.12.2016 | NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center
Cyclic change within magma reservoirs significantly affects the explosivity of volcanic eruptions
30.11.2016 | Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz
A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.
Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...
In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.
“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...
The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.
The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...
Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water
In two recent publications in the Journal of Chemical Physics and in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, researchers around Melanie Schnell from the Max...
The efficiency of power electronic systems is not solely dependent on electrical efficiency but also on weight, for example, in mobile systems. When the weight of relevant components and devices in airplanes, for instance, is reduced, fuel savings can be achieved and correspondingly greenhouse gas emissions decreased. New materials and components based on gallium nitride (GaN) can help to reduce weight and increase the efficiency. With these new materials, power electronic switches can be operated at higher switching frequency, resulting in higher power density and lower material costs.
Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE together with partners have investigated how these materials can be used to make power...
16.11.2016 | Event News
01.11.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
02.12.2016 | Medical Engineering
02.12.2016 | Agricultural and Forestry Science
02.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy