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Royal Meteorological Society Masterclass: How do we use the “Weather” in “Numerical Weather Prediction”?
Speaker: Professor Peter Clark, University of Reading
We have been forecasting using computer models for well over 50 years. However, while we soon became used to the idea that so-called ‘NWP’ (Numerical Weather Prediction) models predict the synoptic-scale meteorology, such as the position and strength of low- or high-pressure regions, they still lacked the resolution or sufficiently sophisticated representation of physical processes to forecast the ‘weather’ such as rain, cloud, fog without additional help from some post-processing or interpretation by meteorologists.
Vast increases in computer power have led, in part at least, to increases in model resolution and sophistication, pioneered in regional models to the extent that they now represent much of the ‘weather’ directly. Model horizontal grid lengths of 1-2 km are now standard, and some centres are investigating resolutions 10 times higher, such that some of the motions we would label as ‘turbulence’ are explicitly simulated. This has contributed to considerable improvements in forecasting, but, paradoxically, smaller scales are less predictable than larger scales, so we are faced with a real dilemma over what we can believe in models and how we extract the best information.
This talk and discussion will highlight these issues and discuss some of the work that is happening to help us make the best use of these advances.
About RMetS and University of Reading Meteorological Masterclasses
Continuing our online Meteorological Masterclasses in partnership with the University of Reading, we are pleased to announce a new Masterclass series in “Advances in weather and climate forecasting”.
During this series, three leading experts from the University of Reading will discuss the latest scientific advances for understanding and predicting weather, climate and its impacts. Topics to be covered include data assimilation and machine learning; identification of causal pathways in atmospheric teleconnections; and modelling advances in resolution and parameterization for weather forecasting.
These masterclasses are intended to provide support for professionals working in Meteorology and Climate Science, and its operational applications who wish to remain up to date on recent scientific developments in the field.
Masterclasses will run weekly on Wednesday’s 16th, 23rd and 30th March 2022 from 3 pm to 4.30 pm (UTC), consisting of a presentation followed by the opportunity for questions and discussion with the speaker. Whilst the webinars are part of a series, attendance at all three events is not compulsory.