Scaling of Precipitation Extremes over a Wide Range of Climates Simulated with an Idealized GCM
Author(s)O'Gorman, Paul Ambrose; Schneider, Tapio
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Extremes of precipitation are examined in a wide range of climates simulated with an idealized aquaplanet GCM. The high percentiles of daily precipitation increase as the climate warms. Their fractional rate of increase with global-mean surface temperature is generally similar to or greater than that of mean precipitation, but it is less than that of atmospheric (column) water vapor content. A simple scaling is introduced for precipitation extremes that accounts for their behavior by including the effects of changes in the moist-adiabatic lapse rate, the circulation strength, and the temperature when the extreme events occur. The effects of changes in the moist-adiabatic lapse rate and circulation strength on precipitation extremes are important globally, whereas the difference in the mean temperature and the temperature at which precipitation extremes occur is important only at middle to high latitudes.
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences
Journal of Climate
American Meteorological Society
O’Gorman, Paul A., and Tapio Schneider. “Scaling of Precipitation Extremes over a Wide Range of Climates Simulated with an Idealized GCM.” J. Climate 22.21 (2011) : 5676-5685.© 2011 American Meteorological Society.
Final published version