The diurnal cycle (DC) in the cirrus canopy of tropical cyclones (TCs) is a well-documented phenomenon. While early studies linked the DC in the area of the cirrus canopy to a DC in the strength of eyewall convection, later studies considered it a direct response to the DC of radiation in the cirrus canopy. In this study, an idealized linear model is used to examine the extent to which linear dynamics can capture the DC in TCs, in particular the transition between balanced and radiating responses to diurnal heating. The model heat forcing is physically motivated by the diabatic heating output from a realistic simulation, which illustrates the presence of a DC in moist convective heating and radiative heating in the eyewall, and a DC in radiative heating in the cirrus canopy. This study finds that the DCs of heating in the eyewall yield a response that is restricted to inside the RMW by the high inertial stability in the inner core. The DC of radiative heating in the cirrus canopy yields a response throughout the entire cyclone. Lower-frequency responses, of diurnal and semidiurnal frequency, are balanced throughout much of the cyclone. High-frequency waves with periods under 8 h, created at sunrise and sunset, can radiate outward and downward. These results indicate that diurnal responses are balanced in the majority of a TC and originate in the cirrus canopy, instead of the eyewall. The DC in cirrus canopy vertical motion also appears to originate in the cirrus canopy.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Atmospheric Science