COSMO-CLM2: a new version of the COSMO-CLM model coupled to the Community Land Model
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- Davin, E.L., Stöckli, R., Jaeger, E.B. et al. Clim Dyn (2011) 37: 1889. doi:10.1007/s00382-011-1019-z
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This study presents an evaluation of a new biosphere-atmosphere Regional Climate Model. COSMO-CLM2 results from the coupling between the non-hydrostatic atmospheric model COSMO-CLM version 4.0 and the Community Land Model version 3.5 (CLM3.5). In this coupling, CLM3.5 replaces a simpler land surface parameterization (TERRA_ML) used in the standard COSMO-CLM. Compared to TERRA_ML, CLM3.5 comprises a more complete representation of land surface processes including hydrology, biogeophysics, biogeochemistry and vegetation dynamics. Historical climate simulations over Europe with COSMO-CLM and with the new COSMO-CLM2 are evaluated against various data products. The simulated climate is found to be substantially affected by the coupling with CLM3.5, particularly in summer. Radiation fluxes as well as turbulent fluxes at the surface are found to be more realistically represented in COSMO-CLM2. This subsequently leads to improvements of several aspects of the simulated climate (cloud cover, surface temperature and precipitation). We show that a better partitioning of turbulent fluxes is the central factor allowing for the better performances of COSMO-CLM2 over COSMO-CLM. Despite these improvements, some model deficiencies still remain, most notably a substantial underestimation of surface net shortwave radiation. Overall, these results highlight the importance of land surface processes in shaping the European climate and the benefit of using an advanced land surface model for regional climate simulations.