Convective Meteorology (Mesoscale Dynamics)

Convective Meteorology (Mesoscale Dynamics)
Investigating the Impacts of Assimilating Non-Conventional Surface Observations on High-Resolution Analyses and Forecasts

Lee Carlaw
OU School of Meteorology

11 April 2014, 3:00 PM

National Weather Center, Room 5600
120 David L. Boren Blvd.
University of Oklahoma
Norman, OK

With recent advances in computing capabilities, research efforts have focused increasingly on the influence of radar data on high-resolution analyses and forecasts. Comparatively few studies have investigated the impacts of surface observations on storm-scale simulations. Even fewer have attempted to determine the effects of incorporating non-conventional stations that are owned by private companies, the public, or non-governmental agencies. In an attempt to improve our current mesoscale observing capabilities, the National Research Council recently proposed a plan for the development of a nationwide Network of Networks that would integrate many disparate non-conventional systems into a coordinated, national observing infrastructure.

In order to evaluate the potential value added by assimilating non-conventional observing systems, several Observing System Experiments (OSEs) were conducted on 400-m resolution analyses and forecasts of a tornadic supercell that developed during the evening of 15 May 2013 to the southwest of the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. In this case study, the addition of thermodynamic data from non-conventional surface observations within the storm inflow proved fundamentally important to forecasts of the storm evolution. Additionally, a continuous, cycled analysis system is developed in order to test the longer-term impacts of assimilating non-conventional surface data on hourly 4-km analyses beginning on 1 March 2014. Verification of these analyses show consistent improvements when non-conventional data are included in the assimilation scheme.

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Convective Meteorology (Mesoscale Dynamics) Seminar Series website