Evaluation of the 7-km GEOS-5 Nature Run
- Norris, Peter M.
- March 2015.
- Physical Description:
- 1 electronic document
- Additional Creators:
- Darmenov, Anton, Koster, Randal, Putman, William M., Prive, Nikki, Ott, Lesley, Cullather, Richard, Reale, Oreste, McCarty, Will, Buchard, Virginie, Coy, Lawrence, Draper, Clara, Bosilovich, Michael, Achuthavarier, Deepthi, Chao, Winston, Pawson, Steven, Gelaro, Ronald, Molod, Andrea, da Silva, Arlindo, and Schubert, Siegfried
- Restrictions on Access:
- Unclassified, Unlimited, Publicly available. and Free-to-read Unrestricted online access
- This report documents an evaluation by the Global Modeling and Assimilation Office (GMAO) of a two-year 7-km-resolution non-hydrostatic global mesoscale simulation produced with the Goddard Earth Observing System (GEOS-5) atmospheric general circulation model. The simulation was produced as a Nature Run for conducting observing system simulation experiments (OSSEs). Generation of the GEOS-5 Nature Run (G5NR) was motivated in part by the desire of the OSSE community for an improved high-resolution sequel to an existing Nature Run produced by the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF), which has served the community for several years. The intended use of the G5NR in this context is for generating simulated observations to test proposed observing system designs regarding new instruments and their deployments. Because NASA's interest in OSSEs extends beyond traditional weather forecasting applications, the G5NR includes, in addition to standard meteorological components, a suite of aerosol types and several trace gas concentrations, with emissions downscaled to 10 km using ancillary information such as power plant location, population density and night-light information. The evaluation exercise described here involved more than twenty-five GMAO scientists investigating various aspects of the G5NR performance, including time mean temperature and wind fields, energy spectra, precipitation and the hydrological cycle, the representation of waves, tropical cyclones and midlatitude storms, land and ocean surface characteristics, the representation and forcing effects of clouds and radiation, dynamics of the stratosphere and mesosphere, and the representation of aerosols and trace gases. Comparisons are made with observational data sets when possible, as well as with reanalyses and other long model simulations. The evaluation is broad in scope, as it is meant to assess the overall realism of basic aspects of the G5NR deemed relevant to the conduct of OSSEs. However, because of the relatively short record and other practical considerations, these comparisons cannot provide a definitive, statistically sound assessment of all model deficiencies, or guarantee the G5NR's suitability for all OSSE applications. Differences between the observed and simulated behavior also must be judged in the context of basic internal atmospheric variability which can introduce variations that are not necessarily controlled by the prescribed sea surface temperatures used in generating the G5NR. The results show that the G5NR performs well as measured by the majority of metrics applied in this evaluation. Particular benefits derived from the 7-km resolution of G5NR include realistic representations of extreme weather events in both the tropics and extratropics including tropical cyclones, Nor'easters and mesoscale convective complexes; improved representation of the diurnal cycle of precipitation over land; well-resolved surface-atmosphere interactions such as katabatic wind flows over Antarctica and Greenland; and resolution of orographically generated gravity waves that propagate into the upper atmosphere and influence the large scale circulation. Obvious deficiencies in the G5NR include a "splitting" of the inter-tropical convergence zone, which leads to a weaker-than-observed Hadley circulation and related deficiencies in the depiction of stationary wave patterns. Also, while the G5NR captures global cloud features and radiative effects well in general, close comparison with observations reveals higher-than-observed cloud brightness, likely due to an overabundance of cloud condensate; less distinct cloud minima in subtropical subsidence zones, consistent with a weak Hadley circualtion; and too few near-coastal marine stratocumulus clouds.
- NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS) Collection.
- Document ID: 20150011486., GSFC-E-DAA-TN21523., and NASA/TM-2014-104606/VOL36.
- Copyright, Distribution as joint owner in the copyright.
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