Comparisons Between TIME-GCM/MERRA Simulations and LEO Satellite Observations
Friday, 19 December 2014
We report on yearlong National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) thermosphere-ionosphere-mesosphere-electrodynamics general circulation model (TIME-GCM) simulations where we utilize the recently developed lower boundary condition based on 3-hourly MERRA (Modern-Era Retrospective Analysis for Research and Application) reanalysis data to account for tropospheric waves and tides propagating upward into the model domain. The solar and geomagnetic forcing is based on prevailing geophysical conditions. The simulations show a strong day-to-day variability in the upper thermospheric neutral temperature tidal fields, which is smoothed out quickly when averaging is applied over several days, e.g. up to 50% DE3 amplitude reduction for a 10-day average. This is an important result with respect to tidal diagnostics from satellite observations where averaging over multiple days is inevitable. In order to assess TIME-GCM performance we compare the simulations with measurements from the Gravity field and steady-state Ocean Circulation Explorer (GOCE), Challenging Minisatellite Payload (CHAMP) and Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) satellites.