Annual Report 2014, C-SRNWP Programme


Balázs Szintai, C-SRNWP PM
Hungarian Meteorological Service
1024 Budapest, Kitaibel Pal utca 1., Hungary

submitted to:

EIG EUMETNET Secretariat


February 26, 2015

1. Headlines

2. Status of programmatic targets

The main activity of the C-SRNWP programme is the scientific and technical (operational) coordination between the five LAM Consortia in Europe (ALADIN, COSMO, HIRLAM, LACE and Met Office). The coordination is ensured by the eight Expert Teams (data assimilation and use of observations; diagnostics, validation and verification; dynamics and lateral boundary coupling; link with applications; physical parameterization: upper air; predictability and EPS; surface and soil processes: model and data assimilation; system aspects) established in 2008 and through the regular correspondence, including the annual meeting, between the members of the SRNWP Advisory Expert Team Committee (previously called Advisory Committee), which consists of the consortia heads and the Expert Team chairs. Standing for the success of the EUMETNET programmatic targets, coordination with other Forecasting (SRNWP-EPS, Nowcasting) and Observation (EUCOS, OPERA) Projects/Activities is done. During 2014 the following coordination efforts have been made.

Coordination with OPERA for enhancing radar data assimilation

C-SRNWP PM triggered an e-mail exchange between OUG (OPERA User Group) members and the OPERA PM, to understand the foreseen difficulties with respect to the deliverables OD1 and OD3 (quality flagging and redistribution of volume data). Radial wind data were sent to ODC by almost all NMSs till the end of 2014, which is a basic condition for OD1 and OD3. For the reflectivity data the main difficulty is to relax the current filtering to allow a distinction between cluttered data and dry pixels (which are currently treated both as "nodata"). This prevents the use of valuable dry information from radars in order to correct spurious humidity and precipitation present in the model. A proper treatment of the problem requires to go back to the radar providers and to change / upgrade the signal processor of radars. This fact may slow down the achievement of OD1 regarding reflectivity and the estimation of the delay is very uncertain due to the heterogeneity of the European radar network.

An alternative fast solution is to send both filtered and unfiltered reflectivity data to ODC and do a filtering there. This latter solution was claimed to be possible for the 80% of the OPERA members by the end of 2014 from a technical point of view, however the bandwidth requirements for this solution have to be still analyzed. Several NMSs started to perform data assimilation experiments with the currently available volume data. The experiences and feedbacks are being collected. In coordination with the OPERA PM, the main challenges of volume data processing were presented by the C-SRNWP PM to the NWP community at the ALADIN-HIRLAM workshop (April 7-11) and at the Obs-SET meeting (6-8 May). At the latter meeting also a summary of LAM radar data assimilation experiments was presented both using OPERA data (through SMHI) and local data using local processing methods.

Observation network design (support EUCOS, Obs-SET)

Input was prepared for the annual Obs-SET meeting on behalf of the SRNWP community. This included a survey on the SRNWP activities regarding the assimilation of BUFR radisonds including the use of the position and exact time of the measurements during the ascents. DFS (Degrees of Freedom for Signal) results as well as outcomes of Observing System Experiments from short-range NWP models have been collected to complement the picture shown by the global experiments. These show that Radar, SYNOP and AMDAR data have the most influence on the short range forecast quality through data assimilation.

Coordination with ECMWF regarding the extension of IFS EPS boundary conditions for very high resolution EPS systems

Based on the recommendation of the ECMWF TAC subgroup for the revision of the Boundary Condition (BC) Optional project made in December 2013 ECMWF started to set up the additional 06 and 18 UTC global ENS test runs. In parallel to this, the convection-permitting LAM EPS experimental frameworks have been set up in Italy, Hungary, Norway and Switzerland. Also a list of open questions have been refined regarding the LAM experiments (periods, archive, forecast ranges, main verification focus) with the leadership of the ET chair for Predictability and EPS.

SRNWP data pool for universities/academia

The new data policy for the SRNWP data pool (open up the access to universities) has been approved by Assembly in November 2013 and by the two non-EUMETNET data providers (ARPA-SIMC and Roshydromet) in January 2014. The new data policy and terms of use has been uploaded to the website for accessing the SRNWP data pool. An advertising email has been sent out by the C-SRNWP PM to the project contact points, so that they can offer their university partners to use the data. The access to the data pool from universities has been relatively low since then, consequently, some more advertisement should be needed in future.

Support for the Global Lake Data Base

Under the coordination of the EUMETNET C-SRNWP Programme a lake data base is being developed. This global lake data base (GLDB) comprises valuable information regarding lake depths and lake bathymetry. These information are especially useful in lake modeling and data assimilation, which provide an important component for the development of numerical weather prediction models and consequently weather forecasts. The COSMO consortium covered the maintenance and development costs of GLDB for 2014. At the beginning of the year the ALADIN Assembly approved that the GLDB maintenance / development will be funded from the ALADIN consortium budget in 2015.

Action on the use of geospatial data at very high resolutions

As going to higher and higher resolutions, the representation of the horizontal variability of surface forcing is getting more and more important. Realizing this, some of the ET surface members and the HIRLAM PM submitted an informal proposal to the SRNWP community for the coordination of knowledge and experiences on the use of novel geospatial data (orography like ASTER, SRTM, GTOPO30, GMTED2010, soil texture like HWSD, land-use like Ecoclimap, Corine, Globcover). As a consequence of this proposal a web-meeting was organized on 4 December 2014, where all the NWP consortia (except for UKMO) were presented. Participants of the web-meeting agreed on the importance of advanced geospatial data for NWP models. It was suggested that the surface ET take a coordinating role in this topic and first results might be presented at the SRNWP/EWGLAM meeting in 2015.

Promoting European NWP models for education

The answers to the questionnaire sent out in 2013 by the C-SRNWP PM (see the Annual Report for 2013) to the SRNWP consortia (ALADIN, COSMO, HIRLAM, LACE, UKMO) have been collected and a very first statistics has been prepared reflecting the needs of the different consortia for enhancing the use of their NWP models in education. Based on this a rough statement is that the ALADIN and HIRLAM consortia feel that there is plenty of room for improvement (they would like to involve more universities using the ALADIN/AROME models). COSMO and UKMO are rather satisfied with their current positions (theirs model is already used at a large number of universities). An option to improve the situation for ALADIN and HIRLAM is the use of the OpenIFS system for education, which has a lot in common regarding the model codes of ALADIN and AROME.

Preparation of the EWGLAM/SRNWP meeting

The EWGLAM/SRNWP meeting (29 September – 2 October) took place at DWD in Offenbach, Germany. The programme was drafted by the C-SRNWP PM with the help of the Expert Team chairs (Data Assimilation, EPS, Link with Applications, Verification). Presentations are here.

The meeting included the SRNWP business meeting, where the activities within the EUMETNET Forecasting Programme and within the C-SRNWP Project have been presented. Also, the SRNWP Advisory ET (AET) meeting took place. On this meeting a questionnaire of EUMETSAT about satellite data usage by NWP models, as well as the coordination with SEEVCCC has been discussed (this latter described separately below). Gergely Bölöni announced that he is leaving OMSZ and the C-SRNWP position on 6 October 2014 and OMSZ nominated Balázs Szintai to take over the C-SRNWP PM task from December 2014 onwards. For the intermediate period October-November Dick Blaauboer and EUMETNET Secretariat (Sergio Pasquini) ensured the continuity of the project. The AET meeting minutes are available from the C-SRNWP PM.

Coordination with SEEVCCC

SEEVCCC (South-East European Virtual Climate Change Centre) expressed its willingness to be recognized as an short-range NWP consortium. On its meeting in October 2014 the C-SRNWP Advisory ET (AET) agreed that the most important condition for SRNWP cooperation is to share the relevant plans between consortia and to join the ET structure. It was proposed that the C-SRNWP PM will contact the Serbian contact point (Milan Dacic) and invite them to give an overview talk about the SEEVCCC plans with respect to SRNWP during the next EWGLAM/SRNWP meeting. SEEVCCC will also be invited to make a link within their plans with the ET structure of C-SRNWP. The next SRNWP AET meeting (inviting the representatives of SEEVCCC) will provide a starting point for further discussion on tighter cooperation on SRNWP and on possible C-SRNWP ET memberships on behalf of SEEVCCC. Also it will have to be discussed what SEEVCCC expects as recognition as an SRNWP consortium.

3. Communication and cooperation

The communication with C-SRNWP member representatives, the Forecasting Programme Manager, other PMs of the Forecasting Programme, Expert Teams is mainly maintained via email. Also the following meetings were used to enhance the communication and cooperation with different partners:

It is to be mentioned as well, that there are 29 registered users the SRNWP surface data pool (maintained by the COSMO consortium).

4. Benefits delivery

In general, the coordination of European limited area modeling activities is clearly beneficial for the EUMETNET partners, since it enhances the development of SRNWP models used by the modeling consortia and their members, significantly contributing to the improvement of meteorological forecasting services with special emphasis on the protection of life and property.

More particularly the coordination work done during 2014 implicitly contributes to the development of limited area model (LAM) data assimilation systems (through the coordination with OPERA, the improvement of observation monitoring standards and through the collection of LAM DFS and FSO results). Also, through giving access to universities to the SRNWP data pool, some contribution is expected from the academic community in the development of land-surface models. Ensuring the development of the Global Lake Data Base by the ALADIN consortium for 2015, enables progress in the field of surface modeling. The joint planning with ECMWF to better serve convection permitting ensemble runs with boundary condition data is expected to have a positive impact on short range EPS forecasting on a 5-years timescale.

5. Financial report

Please find it in a separate excel file.

6. Risks and issues

None to report.

7. Programme change requests


8. Outlook

The most important SRNWP related coordination goals for the 2015 are to: