Improving the Model Convective Storm Quantitative Precipitation Nowcasting by Assimilating State Variables Retrieved from Multiple-Doppler Radar Observations

Yu-Chieng Liou Department of Atmospheric Sciences, National Central University, Jhongli City, Taiwan

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Jian-Luen Chiou Department of Atmospheric Sciences, National Central University, Jhongli City, Taiwan

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Wei-Hao Chen Department of Atmospheric Sciences, National Central University, Jhongli City, Taiwan

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Hsin-Yu Yu Department of Atmospheric Sciences, National Central University, Jhongli City, Taiwan

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Abstract

This research combines an advanced multiple-Doppler radar synthesis technique with the thermodynamic retrieval method, originally proposed by Gal-Chen, and a moisture/temperature adjustment scheme, and formulates a sequential procedure. The focus is on applying this procedure to improve the model quantitative precipitation nowcasting (QPN) skill in the convective scale up to 3 hours. A series of (observing system simulation experiment) OSSE-type tests and a real case study are conducted to investigate the performance of this algorithm under different conditions.

It is shown that by using the retrieved three-dimensional wind, thermodynamic, and microphysical parameters to reinitialize a fine-resolution numerical model, its QPN skill can be significantly improved. Since the Gal-Chen method requires the horizontal average properties of the weather system at each altitude, utilization of in situ radiosonde(s) to obtain this additional information for the retrieval is tested. When sounding data are not available, it is demonstrated that using the model results to replace the role played by observing devices is also a feasible choice. The moisture field is obtained through a simple, but effective, adjusting scheme and is found to be beneficial to the rainfall forecast within the first hour after the reinitialization of the model.

Since this algorithm retrieves the unobserved state variables instantaneously from the wind measurements and directly uses them to reinitialize the model, fewer radar data and a shorter model spinup time are needed to correct the rainfall forecasts, in comparison with other data assimilation techniques such as four-dimensional variational data assimilation (4DVAR) or ensemble Kalman filter (EnKF) methods.

Corresponding author address: Dr. Yu-Chieng Liou, Department of Atmospheric Sciences, National Central University, No. 300 Jhongda Rd., Jhongli City, 320 Taiwan. E-mail: tyliou@atm.ncu.edu.tw

Abstract

This research combines an advanced multiple-Doppler radar synthesis technique with the thermodynamic retrieval method, originally proposed by Gal-Chen, and a moisture/temperature adjustment scheme, and formulates a sequential procedure. The focus is on applying this procedure to improve the model quantitative precipitation nowcasting (QPN) skill in the convective scale up to 3 hours. A series of (observing system simulation experiment) OSSE-type tests and a real case study are conducted to investigate the performance of this algorithm under different conditions.

It is shown that by using the retrieved three-dimensional wind, thermodynamic, and microphysical parameters to reinitialize a fine-resolution numerical model, its QPN skill can be significantly improved. Since the Gal-Chen method requires the horizontal average properties of the weather system at each altitude, utilization of in situ radiosonde(s) to obtain this additional information for the retrieval is tested. When sounding data are not available, it is demonstrated that using the model results to replace the role played by observing devices is also a feasible choice. The moisture field is obtained through a simple, but effective, adjusting scheme and is found to be beneficial to the rainfall forecast within the first hour after the reinitialization of the model.

Since this algorithm retrieves the unobserved state variables instantaneously from the wind measurements and directly uses them to reinitialize the model, fewer radar data and a shorter model spinup time are needed to correct the rainfall forecasts, in comparison with other data assimilation techniques such as four-dimensional variational data assimilation (4DVAR) or ensemble Kalman filter (EnKF) methods.

Corresponding author address: Dr. Yu-Chieng Liou, Department of Atmospheric Sciences, National Central University, No. 300 Jhongda Rd., Jhongli City, 320 Taiwan. E-mail: tyliou@atm.ncu.edu.tw
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