The prototype AQFMS was designed to operate with forecasted meteorological fields from either of two mesoscale meteorological models, the Penn State/NCAR Mesoscale Model MM5 or the ETA-SKIRON meteorological model, University of Athens. The meteorological fields are used to drive the Comprehensive Air Quality Model with Extensions (CAMx), a photochemical air quality simulation model, to provide two distinctive air quality forecasts. Emissions used in the AQFMS are based on revised OTAG anthropogenic emissions and BEIS-II biogenic emissions. The current application did not use prognostic meteorological data to drive affected emissions sources.
The details of the AQFMS and our operational experience with the system over this past summer are discussed. Preliminary evaluations of air quality predictions from the two operational forecasts are presented based on observations available in the region. The performance characteristics of the two operational air quality forecasts are analyzed considering potential differences in critical meteorological parameters forecasted and systematic biases that point towards limitations in the chemical transport model.