The Predictability of Winter Snow Cover over the Western United States Public Deposited

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  • A set of model runs was made with the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) Community Climate Model, version 3 (CCM3) to investigate and help assess the relative roles of snow cover anomalies and initial atmospheric states on the subsequent accumulation and ablation seasons. In order to elucidate the physical mechanisms responsible for the large impact in one case but small impact in the other, two experiments with CCM3 were made that imposed an exaggerated initial snow cover [1-m snow water equivalent (SWE)] over the western U.S. domain. One run was started on 1 December, the other on 1 February. These runs made it clear that the high albedo of snow was the dominant physical process. An additional set of runs with realistic yearly snow anomalies was also made. Results suggest that for runs starting in February (late winter), the initial prescription of snow cover is more important than the initial atmospheric state in determining the subsequent evolution of snow cover. For runs starting in December (early winter), the results are less clear, with neither the initial snow cover nor the initial state of the atmosphere appearing to be the dominant factor. In February, when the sun is relatively high in the sky and days are longer, the albedo effect is a dominant factor; while in December the sun was too low in the sky and days too short for the albedo effect to be important. As the winter season progressed, the subsequent accumulation of snow eliminated the effects of the initial December anomalies.
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  • Marshall, Susan, Robert J. Oglesby, Anne W. Nolin, 2003: The Predictability of Winter Snow Cover over the Western United States. Journal of Climate, 16, 1062–1073.
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  • description.provenance : Submitted by Deanne Bruner (deanne.bruner@oregonstate.edu) on 2012-02-15T01:54:20Z No. of bitstreams: 1 NolinAnneCEOASPredictabilityWinterSnow.pdf: 595278 bytes, checksum: 379b0e1b47c6c4130d3f196a18798da0 (MD5)
  • description.provenance : Made available in DSpace on 2012-02-15T01:54:20Z (GMT). No. of bitstreams: 1 NolinAnneCEOASPredictabilityWinterSnow.pdf: 595278 bytes, checksum: 379b0e1b47c6c4130d3f196a18798da0 (MD5) Previous issue date: 2003-04

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