QPF and Aerosols: Is it time to be concerned about aerosol influences on precipitation?

William R. Cotton

With contributions from

Susan van den Heever, Gustavo Carrió, Stephen Saleeby and Elizabeth Zarovy

Dept. of Atmospheric Science
Colorado State University


I will present a summary of recent simulations of Florida thunderstorms and of wintertime orographic precipitation in which inputs of cloud condensation nuclei, giant cloud condensation nuclei, and ice nuclei concentrations are varied. These simulations will illustrate the potential variations in QPF we can expect due to variability of these input data. I will discuss the level of microphysical modeling that is needed to simulate aerosol influences on precipitation. In addition, I will discuss on- going developmental work in our group to include aerosol influences in larger-scale, non- cloud-resolving models. I will conclude with a discussion on how an operational center might proceed to initialize cloud-nucleating aerosol concentrations in forecast models.