Application of OSSEs to Improved Observing System Design and Enhanced Satellite Data Impact

Monday, 15 December 2014
Robert M Atlas, NOAA, Miami, FL, United States
Observing System Simulation Experiments (OSSEs) are an important tool for evaluating the potential impact of proposed new observing systems, as well as for evaluating trade-offs in observing system design, and in developing and assessing improved methodology for assimilating new observations. Extensive OSSEs have been conducted at NASA/ GSFC and NOAA/AOML over the last three decades. These OSSEs determined correctly the quantitative potential for several proposed satellite observing systems to improve weather analysis and prediction prior to their launch, evaluated trade-offs in orbits, coverage and accuracy for space-based wind lidars, and were used in the development of the methodology that led to the first beneficial impacts of satellite surface winds on numerical weather prediction. At the present time, we are expanding the application of OSSE methodology to severe storm, air quality, and ocean studies. In this paper, we summarize early applications of global OSSEs, and new experiments using both global and regional models (with a special emphasis on atmosphere and ocean analysis, numerical weather prediction and hurricane forecasting). These experiments are aimed at determining (1) the relative impact of alternative concepts for space-based lidar winds, (2) the potential impact of new GNSS RO satellites, (3) the potential impact of a geostationary microwave sounder, and (4) the relative impact of alternative concepts for polar and geostationary hyperspectral sounders.