Development of a Model Performance Metric and Its Application to Assess Summer...

Tian, B., K. Lee, D. E. Waliser, R. Ferraro, J. Kim, J. Case, T. Iguchi, Eric Kemp, F. Di Wu, W. Putman, and W. Wang (2017), Development of a Model Performance Metric and Its Application to Assess Summer Precipitation over the U.S. Great Plains in Downscaled Climate Simulations, J. Hydrometeorology, 18, 2781-2799, doi:10.1175/JHM-D-17-0045.1.

Several dynamically downscaled climate simulations with various spatial resolutions (24, 12, and 4 km) and spectral nudging strengths (0, 600, and 2000 km) have been run over the contiguous United States from 2000 to 2009 using the high-resolution NASA Unified Weather and Research Forecasting (NU-WRF) regional model initialized and constrained by the Modern-Era Retrospective Analysis for Research and Applications, version 2 (MERRA-2). This paper summarizes the authors’ efforts on the development of a model performance metric and its application to assess summer precipitation over the U.S. Great Plains (USGP) in these downscaled climate simulations. A new model performance metric T was first developed that uses both the linear correlation coefficient and mean square error and is consistent with other commonly used metrics, but gives a bigger separation between good and bad simulations. This metric T was then applied to the summer mean precipitation spatial pattern, diurnal Hovmöller diagram, and diurnal spatial pattern over the USGP from the simulations focusing on the summer precipitation diurnal cycle related to mesoscale convective systems (MCSs). The metric T skill scores increase significantly from the control simulation to the nudged simulations and from the nudged simulations with shorter wavelengths to the nudged simulations with longer wavelengths, but do not change much from MERRA-2 to the downscaled simulations or between the various downscaled simulations with different spatial resolutions. Thus, there is some credibility, but no significant value added compared to MERRA-2, of the downscaled climate simulations of the summer precipitation over the USGP.

PDF of Publication: 
Download from publisher's website.
Research Program: 
Modeling Analysis and Prediction Program (MAP)
Energy & Water Cycle Program (EWCP)
Climate Variability and Change Program
Atmospheric Dynamics and Precipitation Program (ADP)
NASA Downscaling Project
Funding Sources: 
NASA Downscaling Project