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DEPARTURE (Part of MiKlip)

The project DEPARTURE (Decadal Prediction of African Rainfall and Atlantic Hurricane Activity) is part of the BMBFfunded joint project MiKlip (Mittelfristige Klimaprognosen). DEPARTURE is dedicated to investigate West African climate and Atlantic hurricane activity and its predictability on a decadal scale. Long-term oscillations in Northern Hemisphere oceans, i.e. the Pacific Decadal Oscillation and the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation, as well as land-cover characteristics, greenhouse-gas and aerosol concentrations control African climate and are promising candidates in the context of decadal predictability. The decadal scale aims at closing the gap between nowcasting efforts and long-term climate change projections. The assessment of decadal predictability is done by multi-decadal model simulations using three different RCMs (REMO, CCLM and WRF) on the basis of SST-driven ECHAM6/MPIOM data. IMK-IFU is responsible for dynamical downscaling using the RCM WRF. The project consists of three work packages comprising the identification of relevant boundary conditions for decadal predictions, regional dynamical donwncscaling and statistical analysis of the RCM ensemble outputs. Focus of the study is the investigation of representations of key atmospheric processes for rainfall generation in the West African monsoon region and for tropical cyclogenesis in the Atlantic region within the RCMs. By developing different boundary condition scenarios, the sensitivity of the models to these boundary conditions will be tested. The controlling processes and feedback mechanisms are in the scope. Besides, an objective of the project is to design an operational decadal forecast system based on the hindcasts studies, which shall help decision makers to find appropriate adaptation and protection measures.


2011 – 2015, Funding: BMBF


Cooperation partners­­:

Institute for Geography, University of Würzburg (Prof. Dr. Heiko Paeth)

Institute for Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences, Goethe University, Frankfurt / Main (Prof. Dr. Bodo Ahrens)

Institute for Meteorology and Climate Research - Troposphere Research, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (Dr. Hans-Jürgen Panitz)

Institute for Geophysics and Meteorology, University of Cologne (Prof. Dr. Andreas Fink, Dr. Kai Born)

Max Planck Institute for Meteorology (Prof. Dr. Daniela Jacob)


Prof. Dr. Harald Kunstmann