Front–orography interactions during landfall of the 1992 New Year's Day Storm
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionWeather and Climate Dynamics (WCD). 2020, 1, 175-189. 10.5194/wcd-1-175-2020
Although following a common synoptic evolution for this region, the 1992 New Year's Day Storm was associated with some of the strongest winds observed along the Norwegian west coast. The narrow wind band along its bent-back front became famous as the “poisonous tail” and paved the way towards today's sting jet terminology. This article re-examines the storm's landfall with a particular focus on the interaction with the orography. Sensitivity analyses based on WRF simulations demonstrate that the formation and the evolution of the warm-air seclusion and its poisonous tail are largely independent of orography. In contrast, the warm sector of the storm undergoes considerable orographically induced modifications. While moving over the orography, both warm and cold fronts are eroded rapidly. This development fits neither the cold-air-damming paradigm nor the passive-advection paradigm describing front–orography interactions. The warm sector is lifted over the orography, thereby accelerating the occlusion process. The insensitivity of the warm-air seclusion to the orographic modifications of the warm sector raises the question of to which extent these entities are still interacting after the onset of the occlusion process.