Fourth Symposium on Fire and Forest Meteorology

Tuesday, 13 November 2001: 3:40 PM
MM5 simulations for the period of 2000 Cerro Grande fire in Los Alamos area
Zhong Wu, EarthTech Inc., Concord, MA
PSU/NCAR Mesoscale Modeling System (MM5) was applied to an area around Los Alamos, New Mexico for a period from May 7 to May 20, 2000, which roughly corresponds to the Cerro Grande Fire period. Three MM5 domains centered at Los Alamos were used in the simulations. The coarse domain covers an area of 1800 km by 1800 km with grid spacing of 60 km. The second domain nests to the coarse domain and covers an area of 720 km by 720 km with grid spacing of 20 km. The finest domain nests to Domain 2 and covers an area of 400 km by 400 km with grid spacing of 5 km.

The simulations tested various physical options in the model. Different nudging methods were also tried to examine their effects on model results. The predicted wind field was compared with observations to evaluate the model performance. The study shows that careful selection of model options is critical to a successful MM5 simulation.

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