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Operational Performance of a New Barotropic Model (WBAR) in the Western North Pacific Basin

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  • 1 Naval Research Laboratory, Monterey, California
  • | 2 University of Munich, Munich, Germany
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Abstract

The Weber barotropic model (WBAR) was originally developed using predefined 850–200-hPa analyses and forecasts from the NCEP Global Forecasting System. The WBAR tropical cyclone (TC) track forecast performance was found to be competitive with that of more complex numerical weather prediction models in the North Atlantic. As a result, WBAR was revised to incorporate the Navy Operational Global Atmospheric Prediction System (NOGAPS) analyses and forecasts for use at the Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC). The model was also modified to analyze its own storm-dependent deep-layer mean fields from standard NOGAPS pressure levels. Since its operational installation at the JTWC in May 2003, WBAR TC track forecast performance has been competitive with the performance of other more complex NWP models in the western North Pacific. Its TC track forecast performance combined with its high availability rate (93%–95%) has warranted its inclusion in the JTWC operational consensus. The impact of WBAR on consensus TC track forecast performance has been positive and WBAR has added to the consensus forecast availability (i.e., having at least two models to provide a consensus forecast).

Corresponding author address: Charles R. Sampson, NRL, Mail Stop 2, 7 Grace Hopper Ave., Monterey, CA 93943-5502. Email: sampson@nrlmry.navy.mil

Abstract

The Weber barotropic model (WBAR) was originally developed using predefined 850–200-hPa analyses and forecasts from the NCEP Global Forecasting System. The WBAR tropical cyclone (TC) track forecast performance was found to be competitive with that of more complex numerical weather prediction models in the North Atlantic. As a result, WBAR was revised to incorporate the Navy Operational Global Atmospheric Prediction System (NOGAPS) analyses and forecasts for use at the Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC). The model was also modified to analyze its own storm-dependent deep-layer mean fields from standard NOGAPS pressure levels. Since its operational installation at the JTWC in May 2003, WBAR TC track forecast performance has been competitive with the performance of other more complex NWP models in the western North Pacific. Its TC track forecast performance combined with its high availability rate (93%–95%) has warranted its inclusion in the JTWC operational consensus. The impact of WBAR on consensus TC track forecast performance has been positive and WBAR has added to the consensus forecast availability (i.e., having at least two models to provide a consensus forecast).

Corresponding author address: Charles R. Sampson, NRL, Mail Stop 2, 7 Grace Hopper Ave., Monterey, CA 93943-5502. Email: sampson@nrlmry.navy.mil

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