Sensitivity of Hurricane Intensity Forecast to Convective Momentum Transport Parameterization

Jongil Han; Hua-Lu Pan
February 2006
Monthly Weather Review;Feb2006, Vol. 134 Issue 2, p664
Academic Journal
A parameterization of the convection-induced pressure gradient force (PGF) in convective momentum transport (CMT) is tested for hurricane intensity forecasting using NCEP's operational Global Forecast System (GFS) and its nested Regional Spectral Model (RSM). In the parameterization the PGF is assumed to be proportional to the product of the cloud mass flux and vertical wind shear. Compared to control forecasts using the present operational GFS and RSM where the PGF effect in CMT is taken into account empirically, the new PGF parameterization helps increase hurricane intensity by reducing the vertical momentum exchange, giving rise to a closer comparison to the observations. In addition, the new PGF parameterization forecasts not only show more realistically organized precipitation patterns with enhanced hurricane intensity but also reduce the forecast track error. Nevertheless, the model forecasts with the new PGF parameterization still largely underpredict the observed intensity. One of the many possible reasons for the large underprediction may be the absence of hurricane initialization in the models.


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