The Contribution of Drifting Snow to Cloud Properties and the Atmospheric Radiative Budget Over Antarctica

Hofer, Stefan ; Amory, Charles ; Kittel, Christoph ; Carlsen, Tim ; Le Toumelin, Louis ; Storelvmo, Trude

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<p align=justify>The Antarctic Ice Sheet experiences perpetual katabatic winds, transporting snow, and moisture from the interior towards the periphery. However, the impacts of Antarctic moisture and drifting snow on cloud structure and surface energy fluxes have not been widely investigated. Here, we use a regional climate model with a newly developed drifting snow scheme to show that accounting for drifting snow notably alters the spatial distribution, vertical structure and radiative effect of clouds over Antarctica. Overall, we find that accounting for drifting snow leads to a greater cloud cover providing an increase of +2.74 Wm?2 in the surface radiative energy budget. Additionally, a comparison with 20 weather stations reveals a 2.17 Wm?2 improvement in representing the radiative energy fluxes. Our results highlight the need to study the impact of drifting snow processes on the future evolution of clouds, the surface energy budget and the vertical atmospheric structure over Antarctica.</p>
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