DARC/NCEO Data Assimilation Training course, Univ. of Reading, 2023


Link to the timetable below

Data assimilation is one of the core activities needed to deliver weather forecasts, and to help understand the environment.  This course will provide an introduction to data assimilation methods used in numerical weather prediction, including some of the latest developments. All methods will be derived from a common framework to allow a full overview of their assumptions and applicability. Furthermore, participants will get the opportunity to apply data assimilation methods to small numerical models, in order to obtain hands-on experience with the different methods.

Full res: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

  • When?
    • Tuesday 9th – Friday 12th May 2023.
  • Where?
    • University of Reading, UK (Covid restrictions permitting; an on-line course will be offered if in-person lectures are not possible).
    • A map of the campus is available here.
  • Who is it for?
    • This course is suitable for postgraduate students, post-doctoral researchers, and weather service employees who would like an introduction to, and a deeper understanding of, data assimilation.
  • How will the course be delivered?
    • The course will be a combination of lectures and computer practicals.
  • What topics will be covered? (to be finalised)
    • Building-blocks of Data Assimilation
    • Introduction to Data Assimilation
    • Variational Methods: Theory and practical issues
    • Computer practicals Variational methods
    • Ensemble Kalman Filter Methods: Theory and practical issues
    • Computer practicals Ensemble Kalman filters
    • Non-Gaussian data assimilation
    • Hybrid Methods: Theory and practical issues
    • Computer practicals Hybrid methods
    • When to use which method
    • Applications of Data Assimilation
  • What is required to attend the course?
    • Some knowledge of basic calculus, statistics, and linear algebra (i.e. vectors and matrices).  Mathematical primers are available below.
    • A laptop computer, to run the practical sessions.
  • Who will deliver the course?
    • Lectures will be delivered by members of DARC including: Alison Fowler, Amos Lawless, Jochen Broecker, Ross Bannister, Sarah Dance, and Yumeng Chen.
    • Practical sessions will be directed by the lecturers and PhD students.
  • How much will it cost to attend?
    • The course is free to attend!  Attendees will need to pay for their own travel, accommodation, and subsistence.
  • How will I run the practicals?
    • Practical examples will be accessed via a Jupyter notebook environment accessed from a web browser on your own laptop.
  • How do I apply?
    • To apply for a place, please send an email to Uzma Saeed (u.saeed@reading.ac.uk), by Friday 7th Tuesday 11th April 2023 with the following information
      • Your full name and host institution
      • A short description of your current research interests (around 50-100 words).
      • Your dietary and accessibility requirements.
    • Applications will be looked at as they arrive, until all the places have been allocated.

Supplementary Material

Course timetable and lecture/practical material – Updated 10/5/2023

The course will be held mainly in the Brian Hoskins Building (aka Meteorology Building, BH/Met, building 58), but also in the Agriculture Building (Ag, building 59).  These are on the main Whiteknights campus of the University of Reading (campus map). Registration and most lectures will be in room BH/Met 1L61.

Handouts will not be provided by the lecturers, but lectures can be downloaded via the on-line timetable below when they become available.

Preliminary time table:

Tuesday 9th May 2023
09.00 09.30 BH1L61 Registration
09.30 09.45 Welcome Alison Fowler pdf
09.45 10.30 Lecture: Introduction to data assimilation Sarah Dance pdf
10.30 10.45 student introductions
10.45 11.15 Break
11.15 12.30 Lecture: Building blocks of DA Alison Fowler pdf
12:30 13:30 Lunch break
13.30 15.30 Practical: Building blocks of DA github
15.30 16.00 Break
16.00 17.00 Lecture: Steps towards assimilating a new observation type (Radar reflectivities) Lee Hawkness-smith (Met Office) pdf
17.00 BH Coffee area Icebreaker reception
Wednesday 10th May 2023
09.00 10.30 BH1L61 Lecture: Variational Data Assimilation I and II Ross Bannister pdf_I, pdf_II
10.30 11.00 Break
11.00 11.45 Lecture: Variational Data Assimilation III Amos Lawless pdf_III
11.45 12.30 Lecture: Reanalyses Sarah Dance pdf
12.30 13.30 Lunch break
13.30 15.30 Practical: Var DA github
15.30 16.00 Break
16.00 17.00 Lecture: DA software Yumeng Chen pdf
Thursday 11th May 2023
09.00 11.00 BH1L61 Lecture: Ensemble Kalman Filter Alison Fowler  pdf_I, pdf_II
11.00 11.30 Break (group photo)
11.30 12.30 Lecture: Machine learning and data assimilation Jochen Broecker pdf
12.30 13.30 Ag 1L06 Lunch break
13.30 14.30 Lecture: Beyond Gaussian DA (updated time) Jochen Broecker pdf
14.30 15.30 Practical: EnKF github
15.30 16.00 Break
16.00 17.00 Practical: EnKF cont
1830 In Reading town centre (Zizzi’s) Dinner
Friday 12th May 2023
09.00 10.30 BH1L61 Lecture: Hybrid methods Ross Bannister pdf_I, pdf_II
10.30 11.00 Break
11.00 13.00 Practical: Hybrid methods github
13.00 14.00 Lunch break
14.00 15.00 Lecture: What to use when Amos Lawless pdf
15.00 15.15 Certificates and closing words


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