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Some Observational Evidence for Dry Soils Supporting Enhanced Relative Humidity at the Convective Boundary Layer Top

The tendency of the relative humidity at the top of a clear convective boundary layer (RH top ) is studied as an indicator of cloud formation over a semiarid region within the conceptual framework introduced by Ek and Holtslag. Typically the tendency of RH top increases if the evaporative fraction at the land surface increases, which supports boundary layer moistening but only when boundary layer growth is limited by atmospheric factors. This regime was supported by Cabauw observations in the original study. Here, new observational evidence that the tendency of RH top can also increase as the surface becomes more dry, as is consistent with another regime of the conceptual framework, is provided. The observations used are from the African Monsoon Multidisciplinary Analyses (AMMA) intensive observational campaign near Niamey, Niger, 20–25 June 2006. In addition, the authors evaluate whether various versions of the Weather Research and Forecasting single-column model confirm the different regimes of the conceptual framework for a typical day in the AMMA campaign. It appears that the model confirms that dryer soils can support cloud formation. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Hydrometeorology American Meteorological Society

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