Articles | Volume 7, issue 1
15 Jan 2007
15 Jan 2007

Analysis of the environments of seven Mediterranean tropical-like storms using an axisymmetric, nonhydrostatic, cloud resolving model

L. Fita, R. Romero, A. Luque, K. Emanuel, and C. Ramis

Abstract. Tropical-like storms on the Mediterranean Sea are occasionally observed on satellite images, often with a clear eye surrounded by an axysimmetric cloud structure. These storms sometimes attain hurricane intensity and can severely affect coastal lands. A deep, cut-off, cold-core low is usually observed at mid-upper tropospheric levels in association with the development of these tropical-like systems. In this study we attempt to apply some tools previously used in studies of tropical hurricanes to characterise the environments in which seven known Mediterranean events developed. In particular, an axisymmetric, nonhydrostatic, cloud resolving model is applied to simulate the tropical-like storm genesis and evolution. Results are compared to surface observations when landfall occurred and with satellite microwave derived wind speed measurements over the sea. Finally, sensitivities of the numerical simulations to different factors (e.g. sea surface temperature, vertical humidity profile and size of the initial precursor of the storm) are examined.