The impact of atmosphere-wave-ocean coupling on extreme surface wind forecasts

Lead Research Organisation: University of Reading
Department Name: Meteorology

Abstract

Skilful weather and climate forecasts are vital for protecting lives and livelihoods and managing the effects of climate change. New capabilities in the use of observations, convective-scale numerical weather prediction models (models capable of representing individual convective clouds), coupled modelling (coupling between models of the atmosphere and ocean, wave or land surface models) and ensemble prediction systems (multiple, equally likely, forecasts of the same event to quantify probability and uncertainty) can improve weather forecasts and so improve early warnings. Our project will contribute to improved prediction of localised extreme wind speeds and gusts using a new convective-scale coupled atmosphere-wave-ocean model.

The aim of this project is to determine whether and how atmosphere-wave-ocean coupling improves surface wind speed and gust forecasts associated with extratropical cyclones through improved boundary layer characteristics

Our CASE partner is the Met Office and our collaboration is with the Environmental Prediction Development Team, part of Weather Science. This project will exploit the new UK Environmental Prediction (UKEP) regional coupled system that was developed by this team. The UKEP system is the first convective-scale coupled model for the UK. Extratropical cyclones (also known as winter storms, windstorms, or low-pressure depressions) are a major wind hazard for the UK. We will work with our Met Office collaborators to determine whether this UKEP system can yield improved forecasts of surface winds (and gusts) associated with extratropical cyclones and, if so, the reasons why this occurs.

Publications

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