A simplified atmospheric boundary layer model for an improved representation of air-sea interactions in eddying oceanic models: implementation and first evaluation in NEMO (4.0)

Un modèle simplifié de la couche limite atmosphérique pour une meilleure représentation des interactions air-mer dans les modèles océaniques à tourbillons : mise en oeuvre et première évaluation dans NEMO (4.0)

Lemarié, Florian ; Samson, Guillaume ; Redelsperger, Jean-Luc ; Giordani, Hervé ; Brivoal, Théo ; Madec, Gurvan

Année de publication
2021
Résumé
<p align=justify>A simplified model of the atmospheric boundary layer (ABL) of intermediate complexity between a bulk parameterization and a three-dimensional atmospheric model is developed and integrated to the Nucleus for European Modelling of the Ocean (NEMO) general circulation model. An objective in the derivation of such a simplified model, called ABL1d, is to reach an apt representation in ocean-only numerical simulations of some of the key processes associated with air-sea interactions at the characteristic scales of the oceanic mesoscale. In this paper we describe the formulation of the ABL1d model and the strategy to constrain this model with large-scale atmospheric data available from reanalysis or real-time forecasts. A particular emphasis is on the appropriate choice and calibration of a turbulent closure scheme for the atmospheric boundary layer. This is a key ingredient to properly represent the air-sea interaction processes of interest. We also provide a detailed description of the NEMO-ABL1d coupling infrastructure and its computational efficiency. The resulting simplified model is then tested for several boundary-layer regimes relevant to either ocean-atmosphere or sea-ice-atmosphere coupling. The coupled system is also tested with a realistic 0.25∘ resolution global configuration. The numerical results are evaluated using standard metrics from the literature to quantify the wind-sea-surface-temperature (a.k.a. thermal feedback effect), wind-current (a.k.a. current feedback effect), and ABL-sea-ice couplings. With respect to these metrics, our results show very good agreement with observations and fully coupled ocean-atmosphere models for a computational overhead of about 9 % in terms of elapsed time compared to standard uncoupled simulations. This moderate overhead, largely due to I/O operations, leaves room for further improvement to relax the assumption of horizontal homogeneity behind ABL1d and thus to further improve the realism of the coupling while keeping the flexibility of ocean-only modeling.</p>
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