One-Dimensional Variational Data Assimilation of SSM/I Observations in Rainy Atmospheres at MSC

Deblonde, G.; Mahfouf, J.-F.; Bilodeau, B.; Anselmo, D.
January 2007
Monthly Weather Review;Jan2007, Vol. 135 Issue 1, p152
Academic Journal
Currently, satellite radiances in the Canadian Meteorological Centre operational data assimilation system are only assimilated in clear skies. A two-step method, developed at the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts, is considered to assimilate Special Sensor Microwave Imager (SSM/I) observations in rainy atmospheres. The first step consists of a one-dimensional variational data assimilation (1DVAR) method. Model temperature and humidity profiles are adjusted by assimilating either SSM/I brightness temperatures or retrieved surface rain rates (derived from SSM/I brightness temperatures). In the second step, 1DVAR column-integrated water vapor analyses are assimilated in four-dimensional variational data assimilation (4DVAR). At the Meteorological Service of Canada, such a 1DVAR assimilation system has been developed. Model profiles are obtained from a research version of the Global Environmental Multi-Scale model. Several issues raised while developing the 1DVAR system are addressed. The impact of the size of the observation error is studied when brightness temperatures are assimilated. For two case studies, analyses are derived when either surface rain rate or brightness temperatures are assimilated. Differences in the analyzed fields between these configurations are discussed and shortcomings of each approach are identified. Results of sensitivity studies are also provided. First the impact of observation error correlation between channels is investigated. Second, the size of the background temperature error is varied to assess its impact on the analyzed column-integrated water vapor. Third, the importance of each moist physical scheme is investigated. Finally, the portability of moist physical schemes specifically developed for data assimilation is discussed.


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