Session 1A.3 Realtime high-resolution mesoscale modeling for the Defense Threat Reduction Agency

Monday, 1 June 2009: 9:30 AM
Grand Ballroom East (DoubleTree Hotel & EMC - Downtown, Omaha)
David R. Stauffer, Penn State University, University Park, PA; and G. K. Hunter, A. Deng, J. R. Zielonka, K. Dedrick, C. Broadwater, A. Grose, C. Pavloski, and J. Toffler

Presentation PDF (1.5 MB)

Penn State provides operational reachback support to the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) for the Penn State - DTRA in-house mesoscale modeling system while also providing operational redundancy by running parallel mesoscale model forecasts on a mirror computer cluster at Penn State for important worldwide events (Beijing Winter Olympics, Democratic National Convention, Republican National Convention, Presidential Inauguration). Mesoscale model forecasts are used to drive the HPAC-SCIPUFF atmospheric transport and dispersion (AT&D) model for hazard prediction and consequence assessment.

DTRA is currently running a high-resolution (to ~1-km horizontal resolution) MM5 modeling system in-house while Penn State runs that system locally in realtime for operational redundancy. Penn State also runs a high-resolution version of the WRF-ARW locally in realtime. This paper presents some examples of realtime high-resolution mesoscale-model and AT&D forecasts, and also compares results from the realtime MM5 and WRF-ARW forecasts for select cases during the 2008 Beijing Winter Olympics.

Results indicate that the MM5 high-resolution realtime forecasts show very good qualitative and statistical agreement with observations, and that WRF has improved since our MM5-WRF comparisons for the 2006 Torino Winter Olympics, as both models produced very similar results for the 2008 Beijing Winter Olympics.

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