NCEP Synergy Meeting Highlights: March 29, 2010


This meeting was led by David Novak (HPC) and attended by Chris Caruso Magee (NCO); Becky Cosgrove (NCO); John Ward (EMC); Geoff Dimego (EMC); Eric Rogers (EMC); Mary Hart (EMC); Vera Gerald (EMC); Jamese Sims (EMC); Stephen Jascourt (UCAR/COMET); Steve Silberberg (AWC); Jason Levit (AWC); Steve Weiss (SPC); Andy Dean (SPC); Keith Brill (HPC); Jessica Schauer (TPC); Richard Pasch (TPC); Kathy Gilbert (MDL); Bill Ward (PR); Gene Petrescu (AR); Andy Edman (WR); Dave Myrick (WR); Pete Browning (CR); Bernard Meisner (SR); and Dave Radell (ER)


1. NCO (Chris Caruso Magee)


Global Multi-grid Wave Model

The parallel evaluation for upgrading the global multi-grid wave model has been extended two weeks. Implementation is planned for May 11, 2010. A TIN will be posted shortly.



A significant update to the GFS is planned for June 22, 2010 (see section 2a below).  The NCO parallel will be starting soon.


After the GFS implementation, the following sequence of downstream implementations is expected:


-GFS-DNG for Guam

-RTMA for Guam


Hurricane Runs

NCO is testing a fifth computer slot for HWRF/GFDL runs.


Also, RFCs are being drafted for changes in the HWRF and GFDL models. These changes include HWRF being coupled with HYCOM and a filter applied to the GFDL. These implementations would follow 1 week after the GFS implementation.


Real-Time Ocean Forecast System (RTOFS)

The addition of Jason II satellite data into RTOFS is expected within the next four weeks.


Air Quality for Hawaii

A NCO parallel of new air quality products for Hawaii has started.


For the latest schedule updates see:



2a. Global Climate and Weather Modeling Branch (GCWMB) (John Ward)



RFCs are in place for the next major GFS implementation. This implementation is planned for June 22, 2010 and includes:

-improvements to the shallow and deep convection parameterizations.

-increase in resolution (to T574 64L or ~27 km grid spacing).

-replacement of shortwave radiation from NASA based version with random cloud overlap to AER based RRTM with maximum/random cloud overlap.

-inclusion of vertical advection of moisture, ozone and cloud condensate based on positive definite advection scheme.

-changes are also made to boundary layer scheme and gravity wave drag.

-3 hourly data will extend to F192

-High resolution data will extend from F180 to F192.

-Maximum wind gusts variable added.


Testing shows a dramatic reduction in grid point storms (colloquially known as “precip bombs” or “grid-scale feedback”), which have plagued the GFS. Tropical cyclone tracks and intensity have also shown improvement.


The resolution changes will not significantly affect the size of the pressure coordinate files, but will affect the sigma coordinate files.


EMC has a web page which compares real-time forecasts between the operational GFS and the parallel GFS is at:    (selected from "GFS Weather Fcst Maps" on the left panel). Note that these web comparisons are only available for the 00Z run.


EMC is working to establish an NAWIPS feed of EMC parallels for NCEP Centers.



Plans are continuing to add the Fleet Numerical Meteorology and Oceanography Center (FNMOC) ensemble to NAEFS. The addition is tentatively planed for Q4 of 2010.



Development is underway for creating downscaled numerical guidance from the native GFS data for Guam and Hawaii. This will help support RTMA for Guam.



2b. Mesoscale Modeling Branch (MMB)(Geoff Dimego)




Select post-processed variables primarily related to aviation are expected to be added in Q4FY10.


A upgrade is being planned for FY11 which replaces the remaining Eta and RSM members with NEMS-NMM-B members. This upgrade would also increase resolution to ~22-25 km, and add a BUFR output.  Assuming all dependencies on Eta and RSM models will be removed with this upgrade, these models could be discontinued.



Established a parallel 2.5 km CONUS version, which is being evaluated by ER and WR. Expect implementation in Q4 of FY10. Also working on a slight realignment of the Hawaii domain, expect to add an RTMA for Guam, and also a 6th domain to support NWRFC operations over portions of Canada.


High Resolution Window Runs

FY10 plans include upgrading the WRF code version and adding a run to cover Guam (which would use GFS initial and boundary conditions). The newer WRF versions for both NMM and ARW use a more conservative advection scheme which has the effect of reducing QPF bias. The run over Guam would replace the current RSM runs over Guam and Hawaii.



The next large implementation will be transitioning the WRF-NMM to the NMM-B and embedding this model within the National Environmental Modeling System (NEMS) framework sometime in FY2011. This transition allows the establishment of 4 km nests over the CONUS, a 6 km nest over Alaska, and 3 km nests for Puerto Rico and Hawaii. An internal EMC parallel has been started.



Expect the transition of the RUC to the WRF-ARW in early FY11. The model slot will be named the Rapid Refresh. The domain will cover Alaska as well as CONUS.


2c. Marine Modeling and Analysis Branch (Vera Gerald)

The Global Multi-grid Wave Model is planned to be upgraded May 11, 2010 (see above).



3a. MDL (Kathy Gilbert)

The Alaska snow and QPF gridded GFS MOS guidance was added to NDGD in January.  Within the month MDL will began routing the Alaska snow and QPF grids to the SBN, but AWIPS changes will be necessary for viewing. 
The 1200 UTC CONUS snow grids will also be routed to the SBN, and the CONUS snow grids were extended from day 5 to day 6. These changes are expected to be viewable in AWIPS.


Hawaii GMOS grids are expected to be implemented by the end of FY10.


3b. NCEP Centers and NWS Regions



Expressed interest in establishing operational data flows for the parallel 2.5 km Gridded MOS from MDL.



An air quality implementation is expected in early summer.


4. The next Synergy Meeting will be held at 2:30 pm EDT on Monday, April 26, 2010 in room 209, with remote teleconferencing capability.