Atmospheric River in the Mediterranean

Trasporto di vapore acqueo integrato verticalmente (kg m−1 s−1) e altezza geopotenziale a 500 hPa

The paper recently published on the Monthly Weather Review, by CNR-ISAC scientists Silvio Davolio, Mario Miglietta, Sante Laviola e Vincenzo Levizzani together with Stefano Della Fera (University of Bologna), describes the physical mechanisms leading to extreme precipitation over Italy at the end of October 2018, associated with the storm “Vaia”. The study identifies the presence and the critical role of an Atmospheric River over the Mediterranean, that is a transport of a huge amount of moisture from the tropics within a long and narrow corridor across the African continent, in feeding the intense rainfall.

Link: Davolio S. et al., 2020: Heavy Precipitation over Italy from the Mediterranean Storm “Vaia” in October 2018: Assessing the Role of an Atmospheric River. Mon. Wea. Rev., 148 (9), 3571-3588.

Figure: Integrated water vapour transport (kg m−1 s−1) and geopotential height at 500 hPa