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dc.contributor.authorStoll, Patrick
dc.contributor.authorSpengler, Thomas
dc.contributor.authorTerpstra, Annick
dc.contributor.authorGraversen, Rune
dc.description.abstractPolar lows are intense mesoscale cyclones that develop in polar marine air masses. Motivated by the large variety of their proposed intensification mechanisms, cloud structure, and ambient sub-synoptic environment, we use self-organising maps to classify polar lows. The method is applied to 370 polar lows in the north-eastern Atlantic, which were obtained by matching mesoscale cyclones from the ERA-5 reanalysis to polar lows registered in the STARS dataset by the Norwegian Meteorological Institute. ERA-5 reproduces most of the STARS polar lows. We identify five different polar-low configurations which are characterised by the vertical wind shear vector, the change in the horizontal-wind vector with height, relative to the propagation direction. Four categories feature a strong shear with different orientations of the shear vector, whereas the fifth category contains conditions with weak shear. This confirms the relevance of a previously identified categorisation into forward- and reverse-shear polar lows. We expand the categorisation with right- and left-shear polar lows that propagate towards colder and warmer environments, respectively. For the strong-shear categories, the shear vector organises the moist-baroclinic dynamics of the systems. This is apparent in the low-pressure anomaly tilting with height against the shear vector and the main updrafts occurring along the warm front located in the forward-left direction relative to the shear vector. These main updrafts contribute to the intensification through latent heat release and are typically associated with comma-shaped clouds. Polar-low situations with a weak shear, which often feature spirali-form clouds, occur mainly at decaying stages of the development. We thus find no evidence for hurricane-like intensification of polar lows and propose instead that spirali-form clouds are associated with a warm seclusion process.en_US
dc.rightsNavngivelse 4.0 Internasjonal*
dc.titlePolar lows – moist-baroclinic cyclones developing in four different vertical wind shear environmentsen_US
dc.typeJournal articleen_US
dc.typePeer revieweden_US
dc.rights.holderCopyright 2021 the authorsen_US
dc.source.journalWeather and Climate Dynamics (WCD)en_US
dc.identifier.citationWeather and Climate Dynamics (WCD). 2021, 2, 19-36.en_US

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Navngivelse 4.0 Internasjonal
Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as Navngivelse 4.0 Internasjonal