7B.3 Overview of the 2015 NOAA/Hazardous Weather Testbed Spring Forecasting Experiment

Tuesday, 30 June 2015: 2:00 PM
Salon A-5 (Hilton Chicago)
Adam J. Clark, NSSL, Norman, OK; and I. L. Jirak, S. J. Weiss, J. S. Kain, M. C. Coniglio, A. R. Dean, K. H. Knopfmeier, J. Correia Jr., B. L. Twiest, C. J. Melick, G. W. Carbin, F. Kong, K. W. Thomas, and M. Xue

The 2015 Spring Forecasting Experiment (SFE2015) will be held 4 May – 5 June by the Experimental Forecast Program of the NOAA/Hazardous Weather Testbed. These experiments, which are held annually and organized by the Storm Prediction Center and National Severe Storms Laboratory, aim to accelerate the transfer of promising new tools and concepts from research to operations and inspire operationally relevant research. Selected highlights for SFE2015 include: (1) Application and evaluation of 2.2-km grid-spacing convection-permitting forecasts provided by the UK's Met Office using the Unified Model (UM) framework. Two versions of the 2.2km UM will be examined with a focus on depiction of the boundary layer structure and sensitivity to vertical resolution. (2) Continued exploration of the ability to generate higher temporal resolution convective outlooks than those issued operationally by SPC. This year, SPC will test experimental 1-h and 4-h period outlooks for tornadoes. (3) Comparisons of ensemble configuration strategies. For the first time, the Center for Analysis and Prediction of Storms (CAPS) will provide real-time forecasts from an EnKF-based 3-km grid-spacing convection-allowing ensemble. The EnKF-based forecasts will be compared to those from the 3DVAR-based system run at 3-km grid-spacing similar to what CAPS has provided in previous years. (4) New diagnostics for maximum hail size will be examined. (5) For the first time, real-time global predictions from NCAR's Model for Prediction Across Scales (MPAS) will be examined for application to extended range (120 h) severe weather forecasts. MPAS uses a variable resolution grid with grid-spacing over the CONUS of 3-km. This proposed talk with highlight the main results and findings from the experiment and discuss avenues for future research in the HWT.
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