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Ming Xue

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The South Central U.S. encompasses a wide range of ecosystem types and precipitation patterns. Average annual precipitation is less than 10 inches in northwest New Mexico but can exceed 60 inches further east in Louisiana. Much of the region relies on warm-season convective precipitation – that is, highly localized brief but intense periods of rainfall that are common in the summer. This type of precipitation is a significant driver of climate and ecosystem function in the region, but it is also notoriously difficult to predict since it occurs at such small spatial and temporal scales. While global climate models are helpful for understanding and predicting large-scale precipitation trends, they often do not capture...
Abstract (from http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/2016JD024796/abstract): A significant challenge with dynamical downscaling of climate simulations is the ability to accurately represent convection and precipitation. The use of convection-permitting resolutions avoids cumulus parameterization, which is known to be a large source of uncertainty. A regional climate model (RCM) based on the Weather Research and Forecasting model is configured with a 4 km grid spacing and applied to the U.S. Great Plains, a region characterized by many forms of weather and climate extremes. The 4 km RCM is evaluated by running it in a hindcast mode over the central U.S. region for a 10 year period, forced at the boundary by...
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Across the Southern Great Plains, increasing temperatures are expected to alter the hydrological functioning of the region by contributing to severe droughts, more intense rainfall events, and more severe flooding episodes. These changes could adversely affect human and ecological communities. The ability to better predict future changes in precipitation and the response of hydrologic systems in the region could help mitigate their negative impacts. Yet while today’s global climate models provide large-scale projections of future temperature and precipitation patterns that can be broadly useful for large-scale water resource planning, they are often not appropriate for use at a smaller, more local scale. This research...
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