EPA Science Inventory

An Observation-base investigation of nudging in WRF for downscaling surface climate information to 12-km Grid Spacing

Citation:

Bullock, R., Kiran Alapaty, J. Herwehe, M. Mallard, T. Otte, R. Gilliam, AND Chris Nolte. An Observation-base investigation of nudging in WRF for downscaling surface climate information to 12-km Grid Spacing. JOURNAL OF APPLIED METEOROLOGY AND CLIMATOLOGY. American Meteorological Society, Boston, MA, 53(1):20-33, (2014).

Description:

Previous research has demonstrated the ability to use the Weather Research and Forecast (WRF) model and contemporary dynamical downscaling methods to refine global climate modeling results to a horizontal resolution of 36 km. Environmental managers and urban planners have expressed the need for even finer resolution in projections of surface-level weather to take in account local geophysical and urbanization patterns. In this study, WRF as previously applied at 36-km grid spacing is used with 12-km grid spacing with one-way nesting to simulate the year 2006 over the central and eastern United States. The results at both resolutions are compared with hourly observations of surface air temperature, humidity, and wind speed. the 12- and 36-km simulations are also compared with precipitation data from three separate observation and analysis systems. The results show some additional accuracy with the refinement to 12-km horizontal grid spacing, but only when some form of interior nudging is applied. A positive bias in precipitation found previously in the 36-km results becomes worse in the 12-km simulation, especially without the application of interior nudging. Model sensitivity testing shows that 12-km grid spacing can further improve accuracy for certain meteorological variables when alternate physics options are employed. However, the strong positive bias found for both surface-level water vapor and precipitation suggests that WRF as configured here may have an unbalanced hydrologic cycle that is returning moisture from land and/or water bodies to the atmosphere too quickly.

Purpose/Objective:

The National Exposure Research Laboratory′s (NERL′s)Atmospheric Modeling Division (AMAD) conducts research in support of EPA′s mission to protect human health and the environment. AMAD′s research program is engaged in developing and evaluating predictive atmospheric models on all spatial and temporal scales for forecasting the Nation′s air quality and for assessing changes in air quality and air pollutant exposures, as affected by changes in ecosystem management and regulatory decisions. AMAD is responsible for providing a sound scientific and technical basis for regulatory policies based on air quality models to improve ambient air quality. The models developed by AMAD are being used by EPA, NOAA, and the air pollution community in understanding and forecasting not only the magnitude of the air pollution problem, but also in developing emission control policies and regulations for air quality improvements.

URLs/Downloads:

Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology   Exit

BULLOCK MANUSCRIPT FINAL FINAL 19JULY2013.PDF   (PDF,NA pp, 1938.284 KB,  about PDF)

Record Details:

Record Type: DOCUMENT (JOURNAL/PEER REVIEWED JOURNAL)
Start Date: 02/25/2014
Completion Date: 02/25/2014
Record Last Revised: 02/27/2014
Record Created: 02/25/2014
Record Released: 02/25/2014
OMB Category: Other
Record ID: 269553

Organization:

U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

OFFICE OF RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT

NATIONAL EXPOSURE RESEARCH LAB

ATMOSPHERIC MODELING DIVISION

APPLIED MODELING RESEARCH BRANCH