17TH Conference on Hydrology
12th Symposium on Meteorological Observations and Instrumentation


Use of Satellite Data Assimilation to Infer Land Surface Thermal Inertia

William M. Lapenta, NASA/MSFC, Huntsville, AL; and R. McNider, A. Pour Biazar, R. Suggs, G. Jedlovec, and S. Dembek

There are two important but observationally uncertain parameters in the grid averaged surface energy budgets of mesoscale models surface moisture availability and thermal heat capacity. A technique has been successfully developed for assimilating Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) skin temperature tendencies during the mid-morning time frame to improve specification of surface moisture. In a new application of the technique, the use of satellite skin temperature tendencies in early evening is explored to improve specification of the surface thermal heat capacity. Together, these two satellite assimilation constraints have been shown to significantly improve the characterization of the surface energy budget of a mesoscale model on fine spatial scales.

The GOES assimilation without the adjusted heat capacity was run operationally during the International H2O Project on a 12-km grid. This paper presents the results obtained when using both the moisture availability and heat capacity retrievals in concert. Preliminary results indicate that retrieved moisture availability alone improved the verification statistics of 2-meter temperature and dew point forecasts. Results from the 1.5 month long study period using the bulk heat capacity will be presented at the meeting.

Joint Session 9, Satellite Measurements: Hydrological Impact and Land Surface Data Assimilation (Joint with the 17th Conference on Hydrology and the 12th Symposium on Meteorological Observations and Instrumentation
Thursday, 13 February 2003, 8:30 AM-12:15 PM

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