Weather & Forecasting

Sea Breeze plotted graphicallyReal-Time Modeling

John Nielsen-Gammon and Gerry Creager are running the MM5 and WRF models in real-time for high-resolution forecasts of Texas and the US coastal regions along the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico. The model is being used for air quality and coastal circulation forecasts.

Parameter Estimation

Paramest - showing estimated mean parameter

John Nielsen-Gammon and colleagues are using Ensemble Kalman Filtering as a tool to improve the parameterizations of mesoscale meteorological models. By allowing data assimilation to affect the parameters that control the behavior of a parameterization, the model can dynamically adjust its parameterization so that its forecast is more accurate.

Storm Structure and Baroclinicity

Disdrometer in a field location

Courtney Schumacher is using disdrometer and radar measurements in Southeast Texas and mesoscale model output to determine the role environmental baroclinicity plays in storm microphysics and divergence profiles.

Organization and Motion of Heavy-Rain-Producing Convective Systems

Convective System

Russ Schumacher uses observations and numerical models to understand the processes that lead to heavy rainfall. Organized clusters of thunderstorms, known as mesoscale convective systems, are often responsible for heavy rains, and the distribution of rainfall in these systems is determined by how they are organized and how fast they move. Observations (in particular, data from the WSR-88D radar network) and numerical simulations can be used to examine what causes some of these systems to move slowly and produce extreme rainfall in localized areas.

Forecast Skill and Uncertainty for Widespread Precipitation

Widespread Precipitation

Russ Schumacher uses ensemble forecast data to identify the relative skill (or lack thereof) and uncertainty in predictions of precipitation. In some meteorological situations, ensemble forecasts show high skill and low uncertainty in their predictions, but the opposite is true in other situations. This research aims to understand the large-scale meteorological conditions the lead to these differences.

Mesoscale Convective Systems

Convective Vortices

Russ Schumacher investigates mesoscale convective vortices: disturbances that develop from earlier clusters of thunderstorms, and which are difficult to predict and often affect the development of additional thunderstorms on following days. The processes that lead to the development and maintenance of these vortices, and their role in producing heavy rainfall, are subjects of current research.

Data Assimilation and Predictability

Paramest - showing estimated mean parameter

Dr. Istvan Szunyogh

  • Ensemble-based data assimilation
    • Global data assimilation with the NCEP GFS
    • Coupled global-limited-area-data assimilation
    • Assimilation of satellite radiance observations
    • Data assimilation for hurricane forecasting
  • Predictability
    • Predictability at global and regional scales
    • Predictability of the Martian atmosphere
College of Geosciences Atmospheric Science Geography Oceanography Geology & Geophysics Environmental Programs Water Degree Program GERG IODP Texas Sea Grant