Climates of Warm Earth-like Planets I: 3-D Model Simulations

18 Oct 2018  ·  Way M. J., Del Genio A. D., Aleinov I., Clune T. L., Kelley M., Kiang N. Y. ·

We present a large ensemble of simulations of an Earth-like world with increasing insolation and rotation rate. Unlike previous work utilizing idealized aquaplanet configurations we focus our simulations on modern Earth-like topography... The orbital period is the same as modern Earth, but with zero obliquity and eccentricity. The atmosphere is 1 bar N$_{2}$-dominated with CO$_{2}$=400 ppmv and CH$_{4}$=1 ppmv. The simulations include two types of oceans; one without ocean heat transport (OHT) between grid cells as has been commonly used in the exoplanet literature, while the other is a fully coupled dynamic bathtub type ocean. The dynamical regime transitions that occur as day length increases induce climate feedbacks producing cooler temperatures, first via the reduction of water vapor with increasing rotation period despite decreasing shortwave cooling by clouds, and then via decreasing water vapor and increasing shortwave cloud cooling, except at the highest insolations. Simulations without OHT are more sensitive to insolation changes for fast rotations while slower rotations are relatively insensitive to ocean choice. OHT runs with faster rotations tend to be similar with gyres transporting heat poleward making them warmer than those without OHT. For slower rotations OHT is directed equator-ward and no high latitude gyres are apparent. Uncertainties in cloud parameterization preclude a precise determination of habitability but do not affect robust aspects of exoplanet climate sensitivity. This is the first paper in a series that will investigate aspects of habitability in the simulations presented herein. The datasets from this study are opensource and publicly available. read more

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Earth and Planetary Astrophysics