EPA Science Inventory

Using a Coupled Lake Model with WRF for Dynamical Downscaling

Citation:

Mallard, M., C. Nolte, R. Bullock, T. Otte, AND J. Gula. Using a Coupled Lake Model with WRF for Dynamical Downscaling. JOURNAL OF GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH. American Geophysical Union, Washington, DC, 119(12):7193-7208, (2014).

Description:

The Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model is used to downscale a coarse reanalysis (National Centers for Environmental Prediction–Department of Energy Atmospheric Model Intercomparison Project reanalysis, hereafter R2) as a proxy for a global climate model (GCM) to examine the consequences of using different methods for setting lake temperatures and ice on predicted 2 m temperature and precipitation in the Great Lakes region. A control simulation is performed where lake surface temperatures and ice coverage are interpolated from the GCM proxy. Because the R2 represents the five Great Lakes with only three grid points, ice formation is poorly represented, with large, deep lakes freezing abruptly. Unrealistic temperature gradients appear in areas where the coarse-scale fields have no inland water points nearby and lake temperatures on the finer grid are set using oceanic points from the GCM proxy. Using WRF coupled with the Freshwater Lake (FLake) model reduces errors in lake temperatures and significantly improves the timing and extent of ice coverage. Overall, WRF-FLake increases the accuracy of 2 m temperature compared to the control simulation where lake variables are interpolated from R2. However, the decreased error in FLake-simulated lake temperatures exacerbates an existing wet bias in monthly precipitation relative to the control run because the erroneously cool lake temperatures interpolated from R2 in the control run tend to suppress overactive precipitation.

Purpose/Objective:

The National Exposure Research Laboratory’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 Geophysical Research: Atmospheres   Exit

FINAL FINAL FLAKE_JOURNAL_ARTICLE_CHANGESACCEPTED_19MAY.PDF   (PDF,NA pp, 590.84 KB,  about PDF)

Record Details:

Record Type: DOCUMENT (JOURNAL/PEER REVIEWED JOURNAL)
Start Date: 07/31/2014
Completion Date: 07/31/2014
Record Last Revised: 07/31/2014
Record Created: 07/31/2014
Record Released: 07/31/2014
OMB Category: Other
Record ID: 282623

Organization:

U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

OFFICE OF RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT

NATIONAL EXPOSURE RESEARCH LAB

ATMOSPHERIC MODELING DIVISION