DATE2022-05-30 11:35:39
TITLEThe role of small-scale sea features in the January 2020 flooding in Israel
AUTHORSEhud Strobach (1) ,Patrice Klein (2) ,Baruch Ziv (3)
  1. 1) Agricultural Research Organization, Rishon Le'zion (Israel) ,2) California Institute Of Technology, Pasadena (United States) ,3) The Open University Of Israel, Ra'anana (Israel)
ABSTRACTOn January 8, 2020, an extreme storm event took place in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea, during which 100-130mm of rain fell in the northern part of Israel in one day. The heavy precipitation event resulted in seven deaths and damage to homes, vehicles, and infrastructure. At the same time, about 100 km to the west of northern Israel, the sea was characterized by a mesoscale eddy with a warm core. In recent years, it was established that small-scale sea features not only affect the atmosphere above but may also affect large-scale circulation patterns, including rainfall. Yet, it is unclear how these features may affect propagation and intensity of individual storms, such as the January 8, 2020 event. Recently, the WRF (The Weather Research and Forecasting) atmospheric model was coupled with the ocean model MITgcm (MIT general circulation model). The coupled model was named the SKRIPS (Scripps–KAUST Regional Integrated Prediction System) model. The two SKRIPS model components (WRF and MITgcm) are well tested at high resolutions, and the regionality of the coupled model allows us to isolate local features while maintaining the large-scale circulation as observed. In this talk, I will present results from a high-resolution (~5km) coupled atmosphere-ocean and uncoupled atmosphere-only regional simulation using the SKRIPS (WRF) model performed during the January 8, 2020 event. The importance of mesoscale sea activity in determining the storm intensity and propagation will be discussed, elaborating on the role of air-sea coupling and the model resolution. Understanding the effect of such mesoscale eddies on extreme atmospheric events may improve their representation in weather and climate models, extending models prediction skill.