Atmospheric Reanalyses – Recent Progress and Prospects for the Future.
A Report from a Technical Workshop, April 2010
Michele M. Rienecker, Dick Dee, Jack Woollen, Gilbert P. Compo, Kazutoshi Onogi, Ron Gelaro, Michael G. Bosilovich, Arlindo da Silva, Steven Pawson, Siegfried Schubert, Max Suarez, Dale Barker, Hirotaka Kamahori, Robert Kistler, and Suranjana Saha
In April 2010, developers representing each of the major reanalysis centers met at Goddard Space Flight Center to discuss technical issues – system advances and lessons learned – associated with recent and ongoing atmospheric reanalyses and plans for the future. The meeting included overviews of each center’s development efforts, a discussion of the issues in observations, models and data assimilation, and, finally, identification of priorities for future directions and potential areas of collaboration. This report summarizes the deliberations and recommendations from the meeting as well as some advances since the workshop.
Summary of Recommendations
From Rienecker et al. (2012)
Target areas for improvements for the next generation of atmospheric reanalyses include:
• The hydrological cycle
• The quality of the reanalyses in the stratosphere
• The quality of the reanalyses over the polar regions
• Representation of surface fluxes
• Observational bias corrections and/or cross-calibration across platforms
• Estimates of uncertainty in the analyses, and
• Reductions of spurious trends and jumps associated with the changing observing system.
Several recommendations were made regarding areas for coordination between reanalysis centers in order to prepare for the next reanalyses:
• Preparation and sharing of lists of anomalous behavior or features to help identify how common anomalies are across the various reanalyses.
• Examination of data utilization, including QC decisions, innovation statistics, bias corrections, outcomes of data selection algorithms, cloud detection outcomes, etc.
• Identification of joint experiments to be conducted to elucidate issues found to be in common in different reanalyses.
• Sharing of results from jointly designed sensitivity experiments.
• Coordination of input observations and ancillary data and centralization of the serving of these observations where possible.
• Expansion of ACRE’s efforts for contributing surface observations to 20CR to contributing to all future reanalysis efforts, possibly acting as a data coordinator and provider of surface data for all future reanalyses in collaboration with working groups of GCOS and WCRP.
• Development of innovative diagnostics and metrics to help quantify observational issues, the quality and also agreement of the reanalyses.
The workshop recommended that a mechanism be established for the timely exchange of information about the quality of the reanalyses, results of experiments, and plans for future developments. This idea was quickly embraced with the establishment of Reanalysis.org. However, further progress is needed in the utilization of such a capability to enhance communications between reanalysis groups.
Finally, consistent with the Arkin et al. (2003) workshop report, the workshop participants recommended extending the reanalysis record for as long as possible, to include the 1970s for reanalyses focused on the satellite era, and to go back at least to 1850 with those reanalyses using sparse observations.
Arkin, P., E. Kalnay, J. Laver, S. Schubert, and K. Trenberth, 2003: Ongoing analysis of the climate system: A workshop report. NASA, NOAA, and NSF, 48 pp. Link to Full Report.