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January and July climate simulations over the SADC region using the limited-area model DARLAM

FA Engelbrecht, CJ deW Rautenbach, JL McGregor, JJ Katzfey


High-resolution climate simulations of near-surface variables are presented for January and July over the Southern African Developing Countries (SADC) region using the CSIRO Division of Atmospheric Research Limited-Area Model (DARLAM) nested within a General Circulation Model (GCM). The model domain includes tropical (north and south of the equator) and subtropical (Southern Africa) regions. Objective measures of skill are used to assess the quality of model simulations, and the performance of the model is verified over various subregions of the model domain. South of the tropics, DARLAM fields are not only superior to those produced by the GCM, but also compare well with mesoscale observations. This is particularly true for the spatial distribution of rainfall and screen temperature simulations. DARLAM, however, severely over-estimates rainfall totals over regions of steep orography.

WaterSA Vol.28(4) 2002: 361-374
AJOL African Journals Online