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On Ensemble Prediction Using Singular Vectors Started from Forecasts

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  • 1 European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts, Reading, United Kingdom
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Abstract

The impact on the ECMWF Ensemble Prediction System of using singular vectors computed from 12-h forecasts instead of analyses has been studied. Results are based on 34 cases in November–December 1999 and 28 cases in September 2003. The similarity between singular vectors started from a 12-h forecast and singular vectors started from an analysis is very high for the extratropical singular vectors in each of the 62 cases and for both hemispheres. Consistently, ensemble scores and spread measures show close to neutral impact on geopotential height in the extratropics. The sensitivity of the singular vectors to the choice of trajectory is larger in the Tropics than in the extratropics. However, the spread in tropical cyclone tracks is not significantly decreased if singular vectors computed from 12-h forecasts are used.

The computation of singular vectors from forecasts could be used to disseminate the ensemble forecasts earlier or to allocate more resources to the nonlinear forecasts. Furthermore, it greatly facilitates the implementation of computationally more demanding configurations for the singular-vector-based initial perturbations.

Corresponding author address: Martin Leutbecher, European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts, Shinfield Park, Reading RG2 9AX, United Kingdom. Email: m.leutbecher@ecmwf.int

Abstract

The impact on the ECMWF Ensemble Prediction System of using singular vectors computed from 12-h forecasts instead of analyses has been studied. Results are based on 34 cases in November–December 1999 and 28 cases in September 2003. The similarity between singular vectors started from a 12-h forecast and singular vectors started from an analysis is very high for the extratropical singular vectors in each of the 62 cases and for both hemispheres. Consistently, ensemble scores and spread measures show close to neutral impact on geopotential height in the extratropics. The sensitivity of the singular vectors to the choice of trajectory is larger in the Tropics than in the extratropics. However, the spread in tropical cyclone tracks is not significantly decreased if singular vectors computed from 12-h forecasts are used.

The computation of singular vectors from forecasts could be used to disseminate the ensemble forecasts earlier or to allocate more resources to the nonlinear forecasts. Furthermore, it greatly facilitates the implementation of computationally more demanding configurations for the singular-vector-based initial perturbations.

Corresponding author address: Martin Leutbecher, European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts, Shinfield Park, Reading RG2 9AX, United Kingdom. Email: m.leutbecher@ecmwf.int

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