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  1. Abstract

    The gravity wave drag parametrization of the Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model (WACCM) has been modified to include the wave‐driven atmospheric vertical mixing caused by propagating, non‐breaking, gravity waves. The strength of this atmospheric mixing is represented in the model via the “effective wave diffusivity” coefficient (Kwave). UsingKwave, a new total dynamical diffusivity (KDyn) is defined.KDynrepresents the vertical mixing of the atmosphere by both breaking (dissipating) and vertically propagating (non‐dissipating) gravity waves. Here we show that, when the new diffusivity is used, the downward fluxes of Fe and Na between 80 and 100 km largely increase. Larger meteoric ablation injection rates of these metals (within a factor 2 of measurements) can now be used in WACCM, which produce Na and Fe layers in good agreement with lidar observations. Mesospheric CO2is also significantly impacted, with the largest CO2concentration increase occurring between 80 and 90 km, where model‐observations agreement improves. However, in regions where the model overestimates CO2concentration, the new parametrization exacerbates the model bias. The mesospheric cooling simulated by the new parametrization, while needed, is currently too strong almost everywhere. The summer mesopause in both hemispheres becomes too cold by about 30 K compared to observations, but it shifts upward, partially correcting the WACCM low summer mesopause. Our results highlight the far‐reaching implications and the necessity of representing vertically propagating non‐breaking gravity waves in climate models. This novel method of modeling gravity waves contributes to growing evidence that it is time to move away from dissipative‐only gravity wave parametrizations.

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  2. The Toba eruption ∼74,000 y ago was the largest volcanic eruption since the start of the Pleistocene and represents an important test case for understanding the effects of large explosive eruptions on climate and ecosystems. However, the magnitude and repercussions of climatic changes driven by the eruption are strongly debated. High-resolution paleoclimate and archaeological records from Africa find little evidence for the disruption of climate or human activity in the wake of the eruption in contrast with a controversial link with a bottleneck in human evolution and climate model simulations predicting strong volcanic cooling for up to a decade after a Toba-scale eruption. Here, we use a large ensemble of high-resolution Community Earth System Model (CESM1.3) simulations to reconcile climate model predictions with paleoclimate records, accounting for uncertainties in the magnitude of Toba sulfur emissions with high and low emission scenarios. We find a near-zero probability of annual mean surface temperature anomalies exceeding 4 °C in most of Africa in contrast with near 100% probabilities of cooling this severe in Asia and North America for the high sulfur emission case. The likelihood of strong decreases in precipitation is low in most of Africa. Therefore, even Toba sulfur release at the upper range of plausible estimates remains consistent with the muted response in Africa indicated by paleoclimate proxies. Our results provide a probabilistic view of the uneven patterns of volcanic climate disruption during a crucial interval in human evolution, with implications for understanding the range of environmental impacts from past and future supereruptions.

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  3. Abstract. Lidar observations of the mesospheric Na layer have revealed considerablediurnal variations, particularly on the bottom side of the layer, where morethan an order-of-magnitude increase in Na density has been observed below 80 kmafter sunrise. In this paper, multi-year Na lidar observations areutilized over a full diurnal cycle at Utah State University (USU) (41.8 N,111.8 W) and a global atmospheric model of Na with 0.5 kmvertical resolution in the mesosphere and lower thermosphere (WACCM-Na) to explorethe dramatic changes of Na density on the bottom side of the layer. Photolysis of the principal reservoir NaHCO3 is shown to beprimarily responsible for the increase in Na after sunrise, amplified by theincreased rate of reaction of NaHCO3 with atomic H, which is mainlyproduced from the photolysis of H2O and the reaction of OH withO3. This finding is further supported by Na lidar observation at USUduring the solar eclipse (>96 % totality) event on 21 August 2017, when a decrease and recovery of the Na density on thebottom side of the layer were observed. Lastly, the model simulation showsthat the Fe density below around 80 km increases more strongly and earlierthan observed Na changes during sunrise because of the considerably fasterphotolysis rate of its major reservoir of FeOH.

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  4. null (Ed.)
    ABSTRACT To explore the various couplings across space and time and between ecosystems in a consistent manner, atmospheric modeling is moving away from the fractured limited-scale modeling strategy of the past toward a unification of the range of scales inherent in the Earth system. This paper describes the forward-looking Multi-Scale Infrastructure for Chemistry and Aerosols (MUSICA), which is intended to become the next-generation community infrastructure for research involving atmospheric chemistry and aerosols. MUSICA will be developed collaboratively by the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and university and government researchers, with the goal of serving the international research and applications communities. The capability of unifying various spatiotemporal scales, coupling to other Earth system components, and process-level modularization will allow advances in both fundamental and applied research in atmospheric composition, air quality, and climate and is also envisioned to become a platform that addresses the needs of policy makers and stakeholders. 
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  5. Abstract

    We conducted global simulations of temperature change due to anthropogenic trace gas emissions, which extended from the surface, through the thermosphere and ionosphere, to the exobase. These simulations were done under solar maximum conditions, in order to compare the effect of the solar cycle on global change to previous work using solar minimum conditions. The Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model‐eXtended was employed in this study. As in previous work, lower atmosphere warming, due to increasing anthropogenic gases, is accompanied by upper atmosphere cooling, starting in the lower stratosphere, and becoming dramatic, almost 2 K per decade for the global mean annual mean, in the thermosphere. This thermospheric cooling, and consequent reduction in density, is less than the almost 3 K per decade for solar minimum conditions calculated in previous simulations. This dependence of global change on solar activity conditions is due to solar‐driven increases in radiationally active gases other than carbon dioxide, such as nitric oxide. An ancillary result of these and previous simulations is an estimate of the solar cycle effect on temperatures as a function of altitude. These simulations used modest, five‐member, ensembles, and measured sea surface temperatures rather than a fully coupled ocean model, so any solar cycle effects were not statistically significant in the lower troposphere. Temperature change from solar minimum to maximum increased from near zero at the tropopause to about 1 K at the stratopause, to approximately 500 K in the upper thermosphere, commensurate with the empirical evidence, and previous numerical models.

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  6. Abstract

    The Community Earth System Model 2 (CESM2) is the latest Earth System Model developed by the National Center for Atmospheric Research in collaboration with the university community and is significantly advanced in most components compared to its predecessor (CESM1). Here, CESM2's representation of the large‐scale atmospheric circulation and its variability is assessed. Further context is providedthrough comparison to the CESM1 large ensemble and other models from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5 and CMIP6). This includes an assessment of the representation of jet streams and storm tracks, stationary waves, the global divergent circulation, the annular modes, the North Atlantic Oscillation, and blocking. Compared to CESM1, CESM2 is substantially improved in the representation of the storm tracks, Northern Hemisphere (NH) stationary waves, NH winter blocking and the global divergent circulation. It ranks within the top 10% of CMIP class models in many of these features. Some features of the Southern Hemisphere (SH) circulation have degraded, such as the SH jet strength, stationary waves, and blocking, although the SH jet stream is placed at approximately the correct location. This analysis also highlights systematic deficiencies in these features across the new CMIP6 archive, such as the continued tendency for the SH jet stream to be placed too far equatorward, the North Atlantic westerlies to be too strong over Europe, the storm tracks as measured by low‐level meridional wind variance to be too weak and a lack of blocking in the North Atlantic sector.

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