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https://doi.org/10.5194/essd-2019-254
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/essd-2019-254
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: data description paper 03 Mar 2020

Submitted as: data description paper | 03 Mar 2020

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This preprint is currently under review for the journal ESSD.

The HadGEM3-GA7.1 radiative kernel: the importance of a well-resolved stratosphere

Christopher J. Smith1, Ryan J. Kramer2, and Adriana Sima3 Christopher J. Smith et al.
  • 1School of Earth and Environment, University of Leeds, Leeds LS2 9JT, UK
  • 2NASA Goddard Space Flight Centre, Greenbelt, MD 20771, USA
  • 3Laboratoire de Météorologie Dynamique, Institut Pierre-Simon Laplace, Sorbonne Université / CNRS, 4 Place Jussieu, 75252 Paris Cedex 05, France

Abstract. We present top-of-atmosphere and surface radiative kernels based on the atmospheric component (GA7.1) of the HadGEM3 general circulation model developed by the UK Met Office. We show that the utility of radiative kernels for forcing adjustments in idealised CO2 perturbation experiments is most appropriate where there is sufficiently high resolution in the stratosphere in both the target climate model and the radiative kernel. This is because stratospheric cooling to a CO2 perturbation continues to increase with height, and low-resolution or low-top kernels or climate model output are unable to fully resolve the full stratospheric temperature adjustment. In the sixth phase of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP6), standard atmospheric model data is available up to 1 hPa on 19 pressure levels, which is a substantial advantage compared to CMIP5. We show in the IPSL-CM6A-LR model where a full set of climate diagnostics are available that the HadGEM3-GA7.1 kernel exhibits linear behaviour and the residual error term is small. From kernels available in the literature we recommend three kernels for adjustment calculations to CO2 and well-mixed greenhouse gas perturbations based on their stratospheric resolution: HadGEM3-GA7.1, ECMWF-Oslo, and ECHAM6. The HadGEM3-GA7.1 radiative kernels are available at https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.3594673 (Smith, 2019).

Christopher J. Smith et al.

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HadGEM3-GA7.1 radiative kernels C. Smith https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.3594672

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Latest update: 07 Apr 2020
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Short summary
Radiative kernels allow efficient diagnosis of climate feedbacks and radiative adjustments to an external forcing using standard climate model output. We present a radiative kernel derived from the UK Met Office's HadGEM3-GA7.1 climate model. We show that a highly resolved stratosphere is important for correctly diagnosing the stratospheric temperature adjustment to greenhouse gas forcings, and by extension, the instantaneous radiative forcing.
Radiative kernels allow efficient diagnosis of climate feedbacks and radiative adjustments to an...
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