Cumulus Congestus Cloud Growth During the Green Ocean Amazon 2014/5 Campaign

Primary Submission Contact

Jordan Eissner

Faculty Sponsor

Michael Jensen


Arts and Sciences



Document Type

Poster Presentation


Fall 10-28-2016


Despite the important role of convective clouds in the Earth's energy balance and hydrological cycle, climate models struggle to represent their lifecycle. Cumulus congestus clouds represent an intermediate state of convective development. The Green Ocean Amazon 2014/5 (GoAmazon2014/5) campaign collected cloud aerosol and atmospheric data at several sites. I analyzed observations from the Department of Energy's Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) mobile facility deployed at Manacapuru, Brazil, to determine the factors that limit convective cloud growth. We tested our hypotheses by substituting thermodynamic profiles with a moist mid-troposphere and an unstable freezing level into the model to determine the new cloud-top height (CTH). The results show that the CTH increased significantly for most of the clouds when placed in a moist environment, and slightly increased for fewer clouds when in unstable freezing-level conditions. CTH depend more on the humidity of the mid-troposphere than the stability at the freezing level.

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