Southern Appalachian cold air damming (CAD)
Rackley, Jared Allen
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Topography is known to affect synoptic and mesoscale weather patterns throughout the world. One such effect, cold air damming (CAD), occurs when a shallow, surface-based layer of relatively cold air becomes entrenched against the windward side of a mountain range. In this thesis, a 30-year climatology (1981 – 2010) of cold air damming events in the southern Appalachians is conducted using hourly surface observations and North American Regional Reanalysis (NARR) data. The period is analyzed both statistically and spatially, revealing the surprisingly high frequency with which CAD affects as far south and west as Florida and Alabama. Using high resolution numerical modeling, case studies of wedge front convection (WFC) and CAD erosion are also conducted to better understand the role of CAD on convection and on the convective environment.