Repository: Freie Universität Berlin, Math Department

Impact of the mesoscale range on error growth and the limits to atmospheric predictability

Leung, Tsz Yan and Leutbecher, M. and Reich, S. and Shepherd, Th.G. (2020) Impact of the mesoscale range on error growth and the limits to atmospheric predictability. Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences, 77 (11). pp. 3769-3779. ISSN 1520-0469

Full text not available from this repository.

Official URL:


Global numerical weather prediction (NWP) models have begun to resolve the mesoscale k^(-5/3) range of the energy spectrum, which is known to impose an inherently finite range of deterministic predictability per se as errors develop more rapidly on these scales than on the larger scales. However, the dynamics of these errors under the influence of the synoptic-scale k^(-3) range is little studied. Within a perfect-model context, the present work examines the error growth behavior under such a hybrid spectrum in Lorenz’s original model of 1969, and in a series of identical-twin perturbation experiments using an idealized two-dimensional barotropic turbulence model at a range of resolutions. With the typical resolution of today’s global NWP ensembles, error growth remains largely uniform across scales. The theoretically expected fast error growth characteristic of a k^(-5/3) spectrum is seen to be largely suppressed in the first decade of the mesoscale range by the synoptic-scale k^(-3) range. However, it emerges once models become fully able to resolve features on something like a 20-kilometer scale, which corresponds to a grid resolution on the order of a few kilometers.

Item Type:Article
Subjects:Mathematical and Computer Sciences > Mathematics > Applied Mathematics
Divisions:Department of Mathematics and Computer Science > Institute of Mathematics
ID Code:2458
Deposited By: Monika Drueck
Deposited On:02 Sep 2020 09:41
Last Modified:31 Aug 2021 08:26

Repository Staff Only: item control page