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GENESIS: Triggering of Convection (ParaCon programme)

Project Funder: Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) and ParaCon programme joint with the Met Office

 Project lead and collaborators: PI: Doug Parker, Co-Is: Alan Blyth, Andy Ross, Steven Böing, John Marsham, Cathryn Birch, Steve Tobias, Stephen Griffiths, PDRA: Leif Denby, Project Partners: Adrian Tompkins, International Centre for Theoretical Physics, Trieste (ICTP) Françoise Guichard, CNRM-GAME, Toulouse, Collaborators: Met Office, University of Reading, University of Exeter, University of Cambridge.

 Research Theme: Environmental Flows and Geophysical Flows

Summary of project

The GENESIS project aims to develop a new set of equations to describe the early stages of development of convective clouds. These equations are to be used in the new Met Office weather and climate prediction models and are expected to lead to fundamental improvements in our ability to predict convective storms around the world. The work is conducted as part of the wider ParaCon programme, in which several UK groups and overseas partners are combining their expertise to improve different aspects of the way convection is represented in our models.

The work at Leeds focusses on the genesis of clouds, from the turbulent characteristics of the air close to the earth’s surface, to the basic fluid dynamics of the air rising in active clouds. The new scheme will, at every timestep, determine the cloud updraught characteristics which are ultimately to be fed to the other parts of the convection scheme and will integrate aspects of sub-cloud and updraught dynamics in consistent equations. Theoretical models are to be developed and refined by reference to very large computational simulations, and using novel statistical measures.

This project has emerged as an outcome of the EPSRC CDT in Fluid Dynamics in Leeds, which has brought together contributions from the School of Earth and Environment and the School of Mathematics in a new collaboration.

Relevant links

Courtesy of NASA Visible Earth













Courtesy of Steven Boeing






















Courtesy of AMMA-AOC