NCEP Synergy Meeting Highlights: September 28, 2009


This meeting was led by David Novak (HPC) and attended by Chris Caruso Magee (NCO), Rebecca Cosgrove (NCO); John Ward (EMC); Eric Rogers (EMC); Mary Hart (EMC); Chad Cary (EMC); Bill Bua (UCAR/COMET); Steve Silberberg (AWC); Andy Dean (SPC); Mike Brennan (TPC); Richard Pasch (TPC); Richard Knabb (CPHC); Ed Danaher (HPC); Keith Brill (HPC); Kathy Gilbert (MDL); Carven Scott  (AR); Dave Myrick (WR); Bernard Meisner (SR), and Pete Browning (CR).


1. NCO (Chris Caruso Magee)



A 15 day parallel evaluation has begun and will end October 16. The TIN has a date of October 13 (see: ), however, the implementation will likely be delayed to October 20.



A 30 day parallel evaluation is ongoing, with an expected implementation date of October 28 See:


NAM (TIN released after the call)

A bundle of minor changes are scheduled to be implemented November 3, 2009, including improvements to the GOES look-alike satellite product. Parallel evaluations will not be required.




A GFS parallel evaluation is expected to begin shortly, with an implementation date of December 15. See:


GEFS (TIN released after the call)

A Global Ensemble Forecast System (GEFS) parallel evaluation is expected to begin shortly, with an implementation planed for December 15. This date may slip. For details see:


Based on previously submitted requirements, NCO has been exploring an expansion of the ECMWF deterministic and ensemble elements (atmospheric and ocean wave) provided to NCEP centers (at 1 degree resolution). NCO has provided test data to local and remote NCEP centers and expects to turn on the additional ECMWF data on October 13. This data would replace current files.




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


The next GFS implementation will include both model, data assimilation (GSI), and postprocessing changes (see TIN above). Testing has revealed a slight degradation in the track forecasts from the HWRF and GFDL (which are initialized from the GFS) with this implementation. Changes to the HWRF and GFDL initialization schemes are being explored. An overall GFS implementation briefing slide package will be distributed to the regions soon.


The next GFS changes center on the shallow and deep convection parameterizations. There is a dramatic reduction in grid point storms (colloquially known as “precip bombs” or “grid-scale feedback”), which have plagued the GFS. There is also marked improvement in nearly all the standard verification statistics. Reruns of tropical cyclones during the 2008 hurricane season are ongoing. The change would be scheduled for March 2010.


An additional GFS implementation is planned for Q3 2010. This implementation increases the GFS resolution (to T574 64L or ~27 km grid spacing)


A Climate Forecast System (CFS) upgrade is expected Q4 2010. There is increased uncertainty in this date, since reanalyses to support the upgrade have recently ceased due to a computer shut down.


2b. Global Ensemble Prediction System (John Ward)

The next GEFS upgrade (see above) increases member resolution from T126 to T190, adds a stochastic perturbation scheme, and uses 8th order horizontal diffusion for all resolutions. Tests show improved forecast skill and reliability. Additionally, several new variables will be included in the “pgrba” files, including 10, 50, and 100 mb level data, surface and top of atmosphere flux data, and soil data, and CIN.


2c. Mesoscale Modeling Branch (MMB)(Eric Rogers)


Besides the imminent SREF implementation (see above), an additional SREF implementation is expected late in FY2010 to add downscaled and bias-corrected (based on the RTMA – similar to NAEFS) sensible weather element products.



A bundle of minor changes are scheduled to be implemented November 3, 2009, including improvements to the GOES look-alike satellite product. See:


The next large implementation will be transitioning the WRF-NMM to the NMM-B and embedding 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 possibly nests for Puerto Rico and Hawaii. An internal EMC parallel has been started.


2d. Marine Modeling and Analysis Branch

No report.



3a. MDL

Updates to the GFS MOS equations are in final testing. The MOS will be rerun using the current parallel GFS as a final test. The MOS update is expected in January 2010.


Gridded GFS MOS (GMOS) will be updated to add snow and qpf for the Alaska domain in the near future.


3b. NCEP Centers and NWS Regions

Nothing to report.


4. The next Synergy Meeting will be held at 2:30 pm EDT on Monday, October 26, 2009 in room 209, with remote teleconferencing capability.