The effects of entrainment on the growth of droplets in continental cumulus clouds

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    Abstract

    Data are presented from aircraft passes through continental cumulus clouds. The effect of evaporation of liquid water from the cloud following the entrainment of free tropospheric air is to totally remove a fraction of the droplets of all sizes rather than partially evaporate most of the droplets. Supersaturations in the cloud are found on average to be considerably higher than those predicted for an adiabatic cloud and the supersaturation is not closely tied to the vertical wind. The average lifetime of individual droplets is considerably less than the age of the cloud and is not expected to exceed about five minutes. This has important consequences for the oxidation of SO2 to sulphate. Statistically favoured droplets that avoid evaporation are observed to grow much larger than average droplets and to sizes larger than would occur at the same altitude in an adiabatic cloud. -from Authors
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1411-1434
    Number of pages23
    JournalQuarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society
    Volume114
    Issue number484
    Publication statusPublished - 1988

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