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Evaluation of the Operational Multiscale Environment Model with Grid Adaptivity against the European Tracer Experiment

Zafer BoybeyiCenter for Atmospheric Physics, Science Applications International Corporation, McLean, Virginia

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Nash'at N. AhmadCenter for Atmospheric Physics, Science Applications International Corporation, McLean, Virginia

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David P. BaconCenter for Atmospheric Physics, Science Applications International Corporation, McLean, Virginia

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Thomas J. DunnCenter for Atmospheric Physics, Science Applications International Corporation, McLean, Virginia

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Mary S. HallCenter for Atmospheric Physics, Science Applications International Corporation, McLean, Virginia

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Pius C. S. LeeCenter for Atmospheric Physics, Science Applications International Corporation, McLean, Virginia

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R. Ananthakrishna SarmaCenter for Atmospheric Physics, Science Applications International Corporation, McLean, Virginia

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Tim R. WaitCenter for Atmospheric Physics, Science Applications International Corporation, McLean, Virginia

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Abstract

The Operational Multiscale Environment Model with Grid Adaptivity (OMEGA) is a multiscale nonhydrostatic atmospheric simulation system based on an adaptive unstructured grid. The basic philosophy behind the OMEGA development has been the creation of an operational tool for real-time aerosol and gas hazard prediction. The model development has been guided by two basic design considerations in order to meet the operational requirements: 1) the application of an unstructured dynamically adaptive mesh numerical technique to atmospheric simulation, and 2) the use of embedded atmospheric dispersion algorithms. An important step in proving the utility and accuracy of OMEGA is the full-scale testing of the model using simulations of real-world atmospheric events and qualitative as well as quantitative comparisons of the model results with observations. The main objective of this paper is to provide a comprehensive evaluation of OMEGA against a major dispersion experiment in operational mode. Therefore, OMEGA was run to create a 72-h forecast for the first release period (23–26 October 1994) of the European Tracer Experiment (ETEX). The predicted meteorological and dispersion fields were then evaluated against both the atmospheric observations and the ETEX dispersion measurements up to 60 h after the start of the release. In general, the evaluation showed that the OMEGA dispersion results were in good agreement in the position, shape, and extent of the tracer cloud. However, the model prediction indicated that there was a limited spreading of the predictions around the measurements with a small tendency to underestimate the concentration values.

Corresponding author address: Zafer Boybeyi, Center for Atmospheric Physics, SAIC, M/S 2-3-1, 1710 SAIC Dr., McLean, VA 22102. boybeyi@apo.saic.com

Abstract

The Operational Multiscale Environment Model with Grid Adaptivity (OMEGA) is a multiscale nonhydrostatic atmospheric simulation system based on an adaptive unstructured grid. The basic philosophy behind the OMEGA development has been the creation of an operational tool for real-time aerosol and gas hazard prediction. The model development has been guided by two basic design considerations in order to meet the operational requirements: 1) the application of an unstructured dynamically adaptive mesh numerical technique to atmospheric simulation, and 2) the use of embedded atmospheric dispersion algorithms. An important step in proving the utility and accuracy of OMEGA is the full-scale testing of the model using simulations of real-world atmospheric events and qualitative as well as quantitative comparisons of the model results with observations. The main objective of this paper is to provide a comprehensive evaluation of OMEGA against a major dispersion experiment in operational mode. Therefore, OMEGA was run to create a 72-h forecast for the first release period (23–26 October 1994) of the European Tracer Experiment (ETEX). The predicted meteorological and dispersion fields were then evaluated against both the atmospheric observations and the ETEX dispersion measurements up to 60 h after the start of the release. In general, the evaluation showed that the OMEGA dispersion results were in good agreement in the position, shape, and extent of the tracer cloud. However, the model prediction indicated that there was a limited spreading of the predictions around the measurements with a small tendency to underestimate the concentration values.

Corresponding author address: Zafer Boybeyi, Center for Atmospheric Physics, SAIC, M/S 2-3-1, 1710 SAIC Dr., McLean, VA 22102. boybeyi@apo.saic.com

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