J20.4 The Tropical Cyclone Modeling Team (TCMT): Evaluating Experimental Models for Tropical Cyclone Forecasting in Support of the Hurricane Forecast Improvement Project (HFIP)

Tuesday, 25 January 2011: 4:15 PM
615-617 (Washington State Convention Center)
Paul A. Kucera, NCAR, Boulder, CO; and B. G. Brown, L. Nance, C. L. Williams, K. Crosby, M. Harrold, and T. Jensen

In 2009, the National Center for Atmospheric Science (NCAR)/Research Applications Laboratory's (RALs) Joint Numerical Testbed (JNT) Program formed a new entity called the Tropical Cyclone Modeling Team (TCMT). The focus of this team is testing and evaluation of experimental models for tropical cyclone forecasting. TCMT evaluations may include models that are either in earlier stages of development or may not be intended for future operational application in the U.S. Much of this effort is sponsored by NOAA's Hurricane Forecast Improvement Project (HFIP). For the HFIP, the TCMT designs model evaluation experiments and provides general testing and evaluation of the various forecast models included in the HFIP annual forecasting demonstrations and retrospective experiments. Utilizing staff expertise in forecast verification, statistics, and atmospheric sciences, the TCMT is developing statistical approaches that are appropriate for evaluating a variety of tropical cyclone forecast attributes. These methods include new diagnostic tools to aid, for example, in the evaluation of track and intensity errors, precipitation and tropical cyclone structure forecasts. The TCMT also supports HFIP through other activities such as communicating results and providing a repository of model output and diagnostic information through a web-based data service site. The data service site will include model forecasts and some observational datasets as well as links and pointers to additional observational datasets. Currently, the TCMT is conducting an evaluation of a suite of experimental models that are candidates for future inclusion into the operational forecasting system at the National Hurricane Center (NHC). This retrospective analysis is being conducted using storms observed during the 2008 and 2009 hurricane seasons. The TCMT is also currently involved in a demonstration project to evaluate new experimental tropical cyclone modeling systems for the 2010 hurricane season. In summary, the TCMT has developed into a resource for tropical cyclone model testing and evaluation that will support many aspects of the HFIP. Examples of current activities and a discussion of future plans of the TCMT will be discussed in the presentation.
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