SRNWP Expert Team on Data Assimilation and Use of Observations (ETDA)
Draft plan for 2008-2009

Bruce Macpherson


The interests of the ETDA cover data assimilation algorithms, developments for new observation types, OSE and OSSE experiments and ensemble data assimilation. Developments in the consortia are listed and the potential for improving collaborative activity is outlined.

Developments in the consortia

Aladin/Hirlam plans

Aladin and Hirlam are developing a common 4-year R&D plan for the 2008-12 period. The main aims currently are as follows:

COSMO plans

UK Met Office plans

Developing collaboration:

The main research themes in each consortium are convective scale data assimilation, and ensemble data assimilation, while a key observation type requiring new developments is radar. These 3 challenging topics seem to offer most opportunity for further collaboration.

Developments at slightly larger scale are still taking place but the usual exchange of knowledge and experience which happens through annual EWGLAM/SRNWP gatherings and other conferences is sufficient to support these.

Steps to improve collaboration between consortia:

  1. when a new technical report is written, or external paper published, in one of the consortia on some topic of relevance to ETDA, we invite consortia contact points for ETDA to circulate it to the other members of ETDA
  2. if one consortium holds a significant planning or review meeting on some aspect of data assimilation, they might consider whether to invite representatives from other consortia
  3. at the annual EWGLAM/SRNWP meeting, ETDA members present will meet informally to plan more specific collaboration
  4. an SRNWP workshop was held in the UK in 2004 on the subject "High resolution data assimilation: towards 1-4km resolution". A second workshop was held in Sweden in 2007 on 'High resolution data assimilation with emphasis on the use of moisture-related observations'. A joint workshop with ETEPS on the topic of ensemble data assimilation might be worthwhile in, say, 2010. For radar assimilation specifically, the best forum might be a special session at one of the biannual ERAD conferences where the radar community are present eg at the next ERAD in 2010 in Romania.
  5. ETDA will also study the plans of other expert teams and see where they can contribute expertise eg concerning surface data assimilation, observational format issues in interoperability, ensemble prediction.
  6. EMETNET fund a number of observational programmes such as EUCOS, E-AMDAR, E-ASAP, WINPROF, OPERA, SURFMAR, E-GVAP. These programmes need expertise in data assimilation, so ETDA members are encouraged to interact with their national representatives in these programmes and to consider where general action by ETDA may be beneficial. For example, in the next 12 months, ETDA will aim to compile a summary of observation impact studies with Doppler radial winds and submit it to OPERA to encourage it in efforts to establish international exchange of these data.