EGU General Assembly 2021
© Author(s) 2021. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Case study of an Arctic atmospheric river with the ICON model

Hélène Bresson1, Annette Rinke1, Vera Schemann2, Mario Mech2, Susanne Crewell2, Carolina Viceto3, Irina Gorodetskaya3, and Kerstin Ebell2
Hélène Bresson et al.
  • 1Alfred Wegener Institute, Atmospheric Physics, Potsdam, Germany (
  • 2Institute of Geophysics and Meteorology, University of Cologne, Cologne, Germany
  • 3Department of Physics and CESAM, University of Aveiro, Aveiro, Portugal

The Arctic climate changes faster than the ones of other regions, but the relative role of the individual feedback mechanisms contributing to Arctic amplification is still unclear. Atmospheric Rivers (ARs) are narrow and transient river-style moisture flows from the sub-polar regions. The integrated water vapour transport associated with ARs can explain up to 70% of the precipitation variance north of 70°N. However, there are still uncertainties regarding the specific role and the impact of ARs on the Arctic climate variability. For the first time, the high-resolution ICON modelling framework is used over the Arctic region. Pan Arctic simulations (from 13 km down to ca. 6 and 3 km) are performed to investigate processes related with anomalous moisture transport into the Arctic. Based on a case study over the Nordic Seas, the representation of the atmospheric circulation and the spatio-temporal structure of water vapor, temperature and precipitation within the limited-area mode (LAM) of the ICON model is assessed, and compared with reanalysis and in-situ datasets. Preliminary results show that the moisture intrusion is relatively well represented in the ICON-LAM simulations. The study also shows added value in increasing the model horizontal resolution on the AR representation.

How to cite: Bresson, H., Rinke, A., Schemann, V., Mech, M., Crewell, S., Viceto, C., Gorodetskaya, I., and Ebell, K.: Case study of an Arctic atmospheric river with the ICON model, EGU General Assembly 2021, online, 19–30 Apr 2021, EGU21-1344,, 2021.


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