The focus of this activity is to better understand and represent small-scale processes and physical feedbacks that are relevant for weather and climate in Central Europe and the Alpine region in particular. Real-case and idealized high-resolution (km-scale) simulations are conducted that include an explicit (rather than parameterized) treatment of moist convection and a better representation of the topography of the underlying surface. The research addresses the predictability of weather phenomena at cloud-resolving scales, as well as case and process studies, partly using long simulations (months to seasons). Results demonstrate improvements over lower-resolution simulations, for example, in terms of the diurnal cycle of precipitation. In a recent study the feedbacks between soil-moisture and precipitation were demonstrated to be highly sensitive to the representation of convection (Hohenegger et al. 2009). In the next years, we intend to further develop this methodology towards a cloud-resolving climate modeling capability.
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