The Value of a Variable Resolution Approach to Numerical Weather Prediction

Buizza, Roberto
April 2010
Monthly Weather Review;Apr2010, Vol. 138 Issue 4, p1026
Academic Journal
It is shown that a numerical weather prediction system with variable resolution, higher in the early forecast range and lower afterward, provides more skilful forecasts than a system with constant resolution. Results indicate that the advantage can be detected also beyond the time when the resolution is truncated (truncation time). Forecasts generated with a T399 spectral truncation up to forecast day 3 and a T255 truncation from day 3 to day 8 (VAR3) are compared with forecasts generated with a constant T319 truncation. First, forecasts are verified in an idealized model error (IME) scenario against higher resolution, T799 simulations. In this scenario, VAR3 outperforms the T319 system beyond the day-3 truncation time for the entire 8-day forecast range, with differences statistically significant at the 5% level. Second, forecasts are verified in a realistic scenario against T799 analyses. In this case, although the advantage of VAR3 can still be detected beyond day 3, it is less evident and not statistically significant. Forecast error spectra indicate that using a higher-resolution model during the first forecast days improves the forecasts of the large scales, thus helping to maintain the advantage of the variable resolution system beyond the truncation time. VAR3 and T319 ensembles are also compared with forecasts with a T255, T399, and T799 constant resolution. The predictability “gain” of all ensemble configurations is measured with respect to the reference constant T255 configuration. Results show that, in the realistic scenario, VAR3 gives gains 50%–75% higher than T319 and 50%–75% lower than T799.


Related Articles

  • Multilayer Perceptron Model for Nowcasting Visibility from Surface Observations: Results and Sensitivity to Dissimilar Station Altitudes. Chaudhuri, Sutapa; Das, Debanjana; Sarkar, Ishita; Goswami, Sayantika // Pure & Applied Geophysics;Oct2015, Vol. 172 Issue 10, p2813 

    The reduction in the visibility during fog significantly influences surface as well as air transport operations. The prediction of fog remains difficult despite improvements in numerical weather prediction models. The present study aims at identifying a suitable neural network model with proper...

  • An Empirical Model for Assessing the Severe Weather Potential of Developing Convection. Cintineo, John L.; Pavolonis, Michael J.; Sieglaff, Justin M.; Lindsey, Daniel T. // Weather & Forecasting;Jun2014, Vol. 29 Issue 3, p639 

    The formation and maintenance of thunderstorms that produce large hail, strong winds, and tornadoes are often difficult to forecast due to their rapid evolution and complex interactions with environmental features that are challenging to observe. Given inherent uncertainties in storm...

  • Assimilation of High-Resolution Mode-S Wind and Temperature Observations in a Regional NWP Model for Nowcasting Applications. de Haan, Siebren; Stoffelen, Ad // Weather & Forecasting;Aug2012, Vol. 27 Issue 4, p918 

    In this paper the beneficial impacts of high-resolution (in space and time) wind and temperature observations from aircraft on very short-range numerical weather forecasting are presented. The observations are retrieved using the tracking and ranging radar from the air traffic control facility...

  • Integrating NWP Forecasts and Observation Data to Improve Nowcasting Accuracy. Huang, Laura X.; Isaac, George A.; Sheng, Grant // Weather & Forecasting;Aug2012, Vol. 27 Issue 4, p938 

    This study addresses the issue of improving nowcasting accuracy by integrating several numerical weather prediction (NWP) model forecasts with observation data. To derive the best algorithms for generating integrated forecasts, different integration methods were applied starting with integrating...

  • A Study on the Scale Dependence of the Predictability of Precipitation Patterns. Surcel, Madalina; Zawadzki, Isztar; Yau, M. K. // Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences;Jan2015, Vol. 72 Issue 1, p216 

    A methodology is proposed to investigate the scale dependence of the predictability of precipitation patterns at the mesoscale. By applying it to two or more precipitation fields, either modeled or observed, a decorrelation scale can be defined such that all scales smaller than are fully...

  • Improved Nowcasts by Blending Extrapolation and Model Forecasts. Hwang, Yunsung; Clark, Adam J.; Lakshmanan, Valliappa; Koch, Steven E. // Weather & Forecasting;Oct2015, Vol. 30 Issue 5, p1201 

    Planning and managing commercial airplane routes to avoid thunderstorms requires very skillful and frequently updated 0-8-h forecasts of convection. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's High-Resolution Rapid Refresh (HRRR) model is well suited for this purpose, being initialized...

  • Cloud Initialization in the Rapid Update Cycle of HIRLAM. de Haan, Siebren; van der Veen, Siebe H. // Weather & Forecasting;Oct2014, Vol. 29 Issue 5, p1120 

    The Nowcasting Satellite Application Facility (NWC SAF) cloud mask from the Meteosat Second Generation (MSG) satellite is introduced in the initialization step of an hourly Rapid Update Cycle (RUC) of the High Resolution Limited Area Model (HIRLAM). MSG cloud-top temperatures and synoptic...

  • Relating observations of contrail persistence to numerical weather analysis output. Duda, D. P.; Palikonda, R.; Minnis, P. // Atmospheric Chemistry & Physics;2009, Vol. 9 Issue 4, p1357 

    The potential for using high-resolution meteorological data from two operational numerical weather analyses (NWA) to diagnose and predict persistent contrail formation is evaluated using two independent contrail observation databases. Contrail occurrence statistics derived from surface and...

  • NCAR/CU Surface, Soil, and Vegetation Observations during the International H2O Project 2002 Field Campaign. LEMONE, MARGARET A.; CHEN, FEI; ALFIERI, JOSEPH G .; CUENCA, RICHARD H.; HAGIMOTO, YUTAKA; BLANKEN, PETER; NIYOGI, DEV; KANG, SONGLAK; DAVIS, KENNETH; GROSSMAN, ROBERT L. // Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society;Jan2007, Vol. 88 Issue 1, p65 

    The article reports on the NCAR/CU surface, soil, and vegetation observations during the International H2O Project 2002 Field Campaign. This campaign was done over the Southeastern Great Plains covering Oklahoma, North Texas, and Texas from May 13 to June 25, 2002. The aim of the campaign is to...


Read the Article


Sorry, but this item is not currently available from your library.

Try another library?
Sign out of this library

Other Topics