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Atmospheric blocking - moist dynamical processes and links to flood events

English title Atmospheric blocking - moist dynamical processes and links to flood events
Applicant Romppainen-Martius Olivia
Number 156059
Funding scheme Project funding (Div. I-III)
Research institution Geographisches Institut Universität Bern
Institution of higher education University of Berne - BE
Main discipline Meteorology
Start/End 01.04.2015 - 31.10.2018
Approved amount 203'513.00
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All Disciplines (2)

Discipline
Meteorology
Climatology. Atmospherical Chemistry, Aeronomy

Keywords (3)

diabatic processes; Flood events; Atmospheric blocking

Lay Summary (German)

Lead
In diesem Forschungsprojekt wird der Zusammenhang zwischen Flutereignissen in Mitteleuropa und stationären Hochdruckgebieten, sogenannten Blockings untersucht. Dazu werden die Wettersitutationen untersucht, welche während der Entstehung der grössen Flutereignisse in Mitteleuropa der letzen 50 Jahre geherrscht haben.
Lay summary

Das erste Ziel dieses Forschungsprojektes ist es zu quantifizieren wie oft blockierende Hochdruckgebiete kurz vor der Entstehung von grossen Flutereignissen aufgetreten sind. 

Das zweite Ziel des Projektes ist es zu untersuchen weshalb einige blockierende Hochdruckgebiete zu Hochwassern führen und andere nicht. Dabei spielt einerseits die Niederschlagsvorgeschichte eine Rolle, also die Frage ob die Böden gesättigt waren oder nicht. Andererseits könnten auch gewisse Eigenschaften der Hochdruckgebiete wie z.B. ihr Lebensdauer entscheidend sein.

 Langfristig sollen die Ergebnisse dieses Projektes zu einer Verbesserung der Hochwasserprognose beitragen. 

 

Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 31.03.2015

Responsible applicant and co-applicants

Employees

Publications

Publication
Quantifying the link between heavy precipitation and Northern Hemisphere blocking—A Lagrangian analysis
Lenggenhager Sina, Martius Olivia (2020), Quantifying the link between heavy precipitation and Northern Hemisphere blocking—A Lagrangian analysis, in Atmospheric Science Letters, 21(10), 1-12.
Atmospheric blocks modulate the odds of heavy precipitation events in Europe
Lenggenhager Sina, Martius Olivia (2019), Atmospheric blocks modulate the odds of heavy precipitation events in Europe, in Climate Dynamics, 53(7-8), 4155-4171.
Relationship between atmospheric blocking and warm‐season thunderstorms over western and central Europe
Mohr Susanna, Wandel Jan, Lenggenhager Sina, Martius Olivia (2019), Relationship between atmospheric blocking and warm‐season thunderstorms over western and central Europe, in Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society, qj.3603-qj.3603.
Blocking and its Response to Climate Change
Woollings Tim, Barriopedro David, Methven John, Son Seok-Woo, Martius Olivia, Harvey Ben, Sillmann Jana, Lupo Anthony R., Seneviratne Sonia (2018), Blocking and its Response to Climate Change, in Current Climate Change Reports, 4(3), 287-300.
Rossby wave propagation into the Northern Hemisphere stratosphere: The role of zonal phase speed
Domeisen Daniela, Martius Olivia, Jiménez-Esteve Bernart (2018), Rossby wave propagation into the Northern Hemisphere stratosphere: The role of zonal phase speed, in Geophysical Research Letters, 45, 1.
A census of atmospheric variability from seconds to decades
Williams Paul, Alexander Joan, Barnes Elisabeth, Butler Amy, Davies Huw, Garfinkel Chaim, Kushner Yochanan, Lane Todd, Lundquist Julie, Martius Olivia, Maue Ryan, Peltier Richard, Sato Koaru, Scaife Adam, Zang Chindo (2017), A census of atmospheric variability from seconds to decades, in Geophysical Research Letters, 44(11), 11,201.
The 1956 Cold Wave in Western Europe
Dizerens Celine, Lenggenhager Sina, Schwander Michael, Buck A. (2017), The 1956 Cold Wave in Western Europe, in Brönnimann Stefan (ed.), Geographica Bernensia, Bern, 101.
On the dynamical coupling between atmospheric blocks and heavy precipitation events:A discussion of the southern Alpine flood in October 2000
Lenggenhager Sina, Martius Olivia, Croci-Maspoli Mischa, On the dynamical coupling between atmospheric blocks and heavy precipitation events:A discussion of the southern Alpine flood in October 2000, in Q. J. R. Meteor. Soc., 1.

Collaboration

Group / person Country
Types of collaboration
Atmospheric Dynamics Group at KIT Germany (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
Atmospheric Dynamics, ETH Zurich Switzerland (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results

Scientific events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Title of article or contribution Date Place Persons involved
Seminar Talk, Oceanic and Planetary Physics Institute Individual talk On the dynamical coupling between atmospheric blocks and heavy precipitation events: A discussion of the south-alpine flood in October 2000. 19.06.2018 Oxford, Great Britain and Northern Ireland Lenggenhager Sina;
Kolloquium in Klimatologie, Klimafolgen und Fernerkundung, Universität Bern Individual talk Interaction of atmospheric blocks and heavy precipitation events 09.05.2018 Bern, Switzerland Lenggenhager Sina;
PG4um - Meeting of the Physical Geography Units, University of Bern Poster Atmospheric blocking and extreme precipitation 27.10.2017 Burgdorf, Switzerland Lenggenhager Sina;
18th Cyclone Workshop Talk given at a conference The Role of Blockings for Heavy Precipitation Events in Central Europe 01.10.2017 St. Adele, Canada Lenggenhager Sina;
EGU General Assembly 2017 Poster How do blockings relate to heavy precipitation events in Europe? 28.04.2017 Wien, Austria Lenggenhager Sina;
Meeting of the Physical Geography Units, University of Bern Talk given at a conference Atmospheric blockings and their role in the Lago Maggiore flood 2000 11.11.2016 Neuenburg, Switzerland Lenggenhager Sina;
15th Swiss Climate Summer School Poster The Role of Atmospheric Blockings in Central European Flood Events 28.08.2016 Grindelwald, Switzerland Lenggenhager Sina;
EGU General Assembly 2016 Talk given at a conference The link between atmospheric blockings and Central European flood events – A case study 17.04.2016 Wien, Austria Lenggenhager Sina;
Blocking workshop Talk given at a conference The link between atmospheric blockings and Central European flood events – A case study 06.04.2016 Reading, Great Britain and Northern Ireland Lenggenhager Sina;
14th Swiss Climate Summer School, Ascona, Switzerland Individual talk Extremes from a weather perspective 24.08.2015 Ascona, Switzerland Romppainen-Martius Olivia;
14th Swiss Climate Summer School, Ascona, Switzerland Poster Poster 24.08.2015 Ascona, Switzerland Lenggenhager Sina;


Self-organised

Title Date Place
Blocking workshop 06.04.2016 Reading, Great Britain and Northern Ireland

Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
143219 Long-term changes of weather extremes in a large ensmble of climate model simulations (EXTRA-LARGE) 01.09.2013 Project funding (Div. I-III)
130079 The dynamics of North Atlantic warm conveyor belts and their impact on downstream wave propagation and European weather systems 01.06.2010 Project funding (Div. I-III)

Abstract

An extreme and long-lasting heat wave occurred over western Russia in summer 2010. It was caused by a series of persistent blocking anticyclones, i.e., persistent quasi-stationary high-pressure systems. At the same time intense precipitation associated with the recurrent passage of cyclonic storm systems and subsequent floods occurred both in Eastern Europe and in Pakistan, upstream and downstream of the blocking anticyclone respectively. This episode illustrates the potentially important role of atmospheric blocking for flood events in Europe. There is evidence for an important two-way interaction between atmospheric blocks and flood events. On the one hand, the longevity and stationarity of blocks ensures extended periods of precipitation associated with extratropical cyclones in the geographical area upstream of the blocking area. These extended precipitation periods can result in flood events. On the other hand, recent studies have shown that cloud diabatic processes (e.g. the condensation of water vapour) might be central to the establishment and maintenance of blocking anticyclones. The precipitation responsible for the flood could hence potentially extend the lifetime and strength of a blocking anticyclone located downstream of the flooded area. A detailed and multifaceted analysis of the role of diabatic processes in blocking events associated with floods in central Europe will be the main focus of the proposed PhD project.The PhD student will investigate the link between blocking anticyclones and flood events in central Europe using reanalysis data. The student will first compile a catalogue of major flood events (30 to 40 events) that happened in central Europe between 1958 and today. Then the link between blocking and the flood events in the catalogue will analyzed quantitatively, i.e., we want to know how often blocks occur downstream or upstream of the flooded area at the time when the flood event was happening and during the weeks immediately prior to the flood event. In a last step, the role of the cloud diabatic processes for the establishment and the maintenance of the blocking anticyclones that are associated with flood events will be analyzed. Our hypothesis is, that the intense precipitation events that trigger the flood events extend the life-time of blocking cyclones that are located immediately downstream via diabatic alteration of the tropopause level flow. To test this hypothesis lagrangian backward trajectories will be calculated to quantify the diabatic contributions to the blocking anticyclone.
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