The authors thank Yingchun Wang (IUM) and Ying-Hwa Kuo (NCAR) for their continuous support, Chaolin Zhang (IUM) for his initial efforts, which led to the current DFI implementation, Shuiyong Fan (IUM) for his work on constructions of 3DVAR cycles, Dale Barker (NCAR) and Henrik Vedel (DMI) for their careful comments, Peter Lynch (Met Éireann), Xiaohua Yang (DMI), and Jimy Dudhia (NCAR) for their suggestions, and the anonymous reviewers for their critical comments, which improved the presentation of the manuscript. The study was partially supported by Beijing Municipal Science and Technology Commission under Contract H020620250330, and the Ministry of Science and Technology of PRC under Contracts 2002BA904B05 and 2005BA904B05.
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