Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/nhess-2021-226
https://doi.org/10.5194/nhess-2021-226

  02 Aug 2021

02 Aug 2021

Review status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal NHESS.

Development of a forecast-oriented km-resolution ocean-atmosphere coupled system for Western Europe and evaluation for a severe weather situation

Joris Pianezze1,a, Jonathan Beuvier1, Cindy Lebeaupin Brossier2, Guillaume Samson1, Ghislain Faure2, and Gilles Garric1 Joris Pianezze et al.
  • 1Mercator Ocean International, Toulouse, France
  • 2CNRM, Université de Toulouse, Météo-France, CNRS, Toulouse, France
  • anow at: Laboratoire d’Aérologie/OMP, Université de Toulouse, CNRS, UPS, UMR5560, Toulouse, France

Abstract. To improve high-resolution numerical environmental prediction, it is essential to represent ocean-atmosphere interactions properly, which is not the case in current operational regional forecasting systems used in Western Europe. The objective of this paper is to present a new forecast-oriented coupled ocean-atmosphere system and its evaluation. This system uses the state-of-the-art numerical models AROME (cy43t2) and NEMO (v3.6) with a horizontal resolution of 2.5 km. The OASIS coupler (OASIS3MCT-4.0), implemented in the SurfEX surface scheme and in NEMO, is used to perform the communications between models. The evaluation of this system is carried out using 7-day simulations from 12 to 19 October 2018, characterised by extreme weather events (storms and heavy precipitation event) in the area of interest. Comparisons with in-situ and L3 satellite observations show that the fully coupled simulation reproduces quantitatively well the spatial and temporal evolution of the sea surface temperature and 10 m wind speed. Sensitivity analysis to OA coupling show that the use of an interactive and high resolution SST, in contrast to actual NWP where SST is persistent and at low resolution, modifies the atmospheric circulation and the location of heavy precipitation. When compared to the operational-like ocean forecast, simulated oceanic fields show a large sensitivity to coupling. Forced ocean simulations highlight that this sensitivity is mainly controlled by the change in the atmospheric model used to drive NEMO (AROME vs. ECMWF IFS operational forecast). The oceanic boundary layer depths can vary by more than 40%. This impact is amplified by the interactive coupling and is attributed to positive feedback between sea surface cooling and evaporation.

Joris Pianezze et al.

Status: open (until 29 Sep 2021)

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Joris Pianezze et al.

Joris Pianezze et al.

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Short summary
Most of the numerical weather and oceanic prediction systems do not consider ocean-atmosphere feedback during the forecast, while this can lead to significant forecast errors notably in cases of severe situations. A new high-resolution coupled ocean-atmosphere system is presented in this paper. This forecast-oriented system, based on current regional operational systems and evaluated using satellite and in-situ observations shows that the coupling improves both atmospheric and oceanic forecasts.
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