29 Mar 2021

29 Mar 2021

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

Statistical estimation of spatial wave extremes for tropical cyclones from small data samples: validation of the STM-E approach using long-term synthetic cyclone data for the Caribbean Sea

Ryota Wada1, Jeremy Rohmer2, Yann Krien3, and Philip Jonathan4,5 Ryota Wada et al.
  • 1The University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan
  • 2BRGM, Orleans, France
  • 3SHOM, DOPS/HOM/REC, Toulouse, France
  • 4Shell Research Limited, London SE1 7NA, United Kingdom
  • 5Department of Mathematics and Statistics, Lancaster University LA1 4YF, United Kingdom

Abstract. Occurrences of tropical cyclones at a location are rare, and for many locations, only short periods of observations or hindcasts are available. Hence, estimation of return values (corresponding to a period considerably longer than that for which data is available) for cyclone-induced significant wave height (SWH) from small samples is challenging. The STM-E (space-time maximum and exposure) model was developed to provide reduced bias in estimates of return values compared to competitor approaches in such situations, and realistic estimates of return value uncertainty. STM-E exploits data from a spatial neighbourhood satisfying certain conditions, rather than data from a single location, for return value estimation.

This article provides critical assessment of the STM-E model for tropical cyclones in the Caribbean Sea near Guadeloupe for which a large database of synthetic cyclones is available, corresponding to more than 3,000 years of observation. Results indicate that STM-E yields values for the 500-year return value of SWH and its variability, estimated from 200 years of cyclone data, consistent with direct empirical estimates obtained by sampling 500 years of data from the full synthetic cyclone database. In general, STM-E also provides reduced bias and more realistic uncertainty estimates for return values relative to single location analysis.

Ryota Wada et al.

Status: open (until 10 May 2021)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse

Ryota Wada et al.

Data sets

Sample wave data set for STM-E Yann Krien, Ryota Wada, Jeremy Rohmer, Philip Jonathan

Model code and software

STM-E Ryota Wada, Jeremy Rohmer, Yann Krien, Philip Jonathan

Ryota Wada et al.


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Short summary
Characterising extreme wave environments caused by tropical cyclones in the Caribbean Sea near Guadeloupe is difficult because cyclones rarely pass near the location of interest. STM-E (space-time maxima and exposure) model utilises wave data during cyclones on a spatial neighbourhood. Long-duration wave data generated from a database of synthetic tropical cyclones are used to evaluate the performance of STM-E. Results indicate STM-E provides estimates with small bias and realistic uncertainty.