An external view of the Met Office building at night.

Dr Adrian Lock

Areas of expertise

  • Parametrization development.

  • Boundary layer modelling.

  • Clouds and turbulence.

  • Large-eddy simulation.

Publications by Adrian Lock

Current activities

Adrian manages the boundary layer and surface processes team, which is part of Atmospheric Processes and Parametrizations. The team focuses on improving our understanding of all processes related to the atmospheric boundary layer and its interaction with the surface, to improve their representation in weather forecasts and climate simulations.

Currently, Adrian is developing improvements to the representation of turbulence in cutting edge grids for numerical weather prediction, when the larger scales of the turbulence become resolvable on the model grid (the so-called "grey zone").  This poses two challenges.  First the parametrization needs to avoid duplicating the resolved turbulent transport and second we need to understand the interaction between the parametrized and resolved scales to ensure the latter are realistic. Adrian is also working on comparing Unified Model simulations of trade-wind cumulus clouds with detailed observations in the Atlantic from the EUREC4A campaign, to understand and improve the representation of the mesoscale (tens to hundreds of kilometres) horizontal structures that form in these clouds.

Adrian is working with colleagues in the MRU and internationally on several projects to improve forecasts of near-surface temperatures, fog and low cloud. These include boundary layer heterogeneity and fog in complex terrain (LANFEX and SoFog3D) and the LIAISE campaign in Spain to investigate how variations in the land surface interact with atmospheric turbulence, and vice versa.

Career background

Adrian has worked on atmospheric boundary layer modelling since he joined the Met Office in 1990. Initially, his research focused on improving high resolution numerical models for turbulent flows (large-eddy simulation) and using this model to improve understanding of the physical processes important for the evolution of stratocumulus clouds. Based on this research, in 1996 he was awarded a PhD on 'Entrainment in Clear and Cloudy Boundary Layers', from the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology. Since then, his interests have broadened to include all types of boundary layer and, in particular, the interactions between different physical processes (such as those between turbulence, radiation and microphysics in clouds). In 2003, Adrian spent a year on secondment to RPN in Montreal where he worked on improving the performance of their shallow cumulus parametrization. In 2004, he returned to the Met Office as manager of the team responsible for the research and development of parametrizations of boundary layer processes.

External recognition

  • Adrian was awarded the L G Groves memorial award in 2009 for his work to improve forecasts of low cloud
  • Adrian received the RMetS L.F. Richardson prize in 1999. The L.F. Richardson prize is awarded annually for an outstanding paper published in the RMetS journals by an author under 35.