14th Symposium on Global Change and Climate Variations


A 12-year (19871998) ensemble simulation of the U.S. climate with a variable-resolution stretched-grid GCM

Michael S. Fox-Rabinovitz, University of Maryland, College Park, MD; and L. L. Takacs and R. C. Govindaraju

The variable-resolution stretched-grid (SG) GEOS (Goddard Earth Observing System) GCM has been used for limited ensemble integrations with a relatively coarse, 60 to 100 km, regional resolution over the U.S. The experiments have been run for the 12-year period, 1987-1998, that includes the recent ENSO cycles. Initial conditions 1-2 days apart are used for ensemble members. The goal of the experiments is analyzing the long-term SG-GCM ensemble integrations in terms of their potential in reducing the uncertainties of regional climate simulation while producing realistic mesoscales.

The ensemble integration results are analyzed for both prognostic and diagnostic fields. A special attention is devoted to analyzing the variability of precipitation over the U.S. The internal variability of the SG-GCM has been assessed. The ensemble means appear to be closer to the verifying analyses than the individual ensemble members. The ensemble means capture realistic mesoscale patterns, especially those of induced by orography. Two ENSO cycles have been analyzed in terms their impact on the U.S. climate, especially on precipitation. The ability of the SG-GCM simulations to produce regional climate anomalies has been confirmed. However, the optimal size of the ensembles depending on fine regional resolution used, is still to be determined.

The SG-GCM ensemble simulations are performed as a preparation or a preliminary stage for the international SGMIP (Stretched-Grid Model Intercomparison Project) that is under way with participation of the major centers and groups employing the SG-approach for regional climate modeling.

Session 13, Climate Change Modeling: II
Thursday, 13 February 2003, 1:30 PM-5:15 PM

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