FIRO Steering Committee Co-Chairs Provide In-depth Briefing to USACE

FIRO Steering Committee Co-Chairs Provide In-depth Briefing to USACE

November 2, 2017

FIRO Steering Committee Co-chairs, Marty Ralph and Jay Jasperse, as well as Steering Committee member Cary Talbot (USACE Engineer Research and Development Center), provided an in-depth briefing to the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), South Pacific Division Commanders, at the Regional Management Board meeting on October 24 in Sacramento, CA. The presentation included findings from the Lake Mendocino Preliminary Viability Assessment and the scientific research that is informing the Viability Assessment. The group discussed transferability of FIRO and next steps for completion of the Final Viability Assessment.

Photo from a briefing on FIRO for the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), South Pacific Division Commanders, at the Regional Management Board meeting on October 24 in Sacramento. .

CW3E Welcomes Dr. Leah Campbell

CW3E Welcomes Dr. Leah Campbell

November 1, 2017

Dr. Leah Campbell joined CW3E as a Postdoctoral Scholar in October 2017 after earning her PhD in Atmospheric Science from the University of Utah. Her research focuses on hydrometeorological processes, particularly the mechanisms that modulate precipitation distribution in complex terrain. Leah’s PhD research focused on lake- and sea-effect precipitation systems in the Great Lakes regions and the Sea of Japan. Her work highlights the role of relatively model mesoscale processes, shaped by coastal terrain features and shoreline configuration, in determining the distribution of precipitation produced by these frequently intense and localized snowstorms. The publications that made up her dissertation were some of the first to examine these mechanisms in the context of precipitation forecasting. In addition to her PhD research, Leah spent much of 2016 in Chile as a Fulbright fellow, studying the interactions of mid-latitude cyclones with the Andes Mountains. At CW3E, she plans to use radar and other observational platforms to examine the atmospheric processes that shape precipitation distribution over the Sierra Nevada, coastal mountains of California, and the Andes. This research will improve weather and streamflow forecast skill for severe precipitation events and advance our understanding of the processes that build the seasonal mountain snowpack.

CW3E AR Update: 31 October 2017 Outlook

CW3E AR Update: 31 October 2017 Outlook

October 31, 2017

Click here for a pdf of this information.

Atmospheric River to potentially make landfall over California

  • A weak to moderate AR is predicted to make landfall over California during 3-8 November 2017
  • Current forecasts indicate the geometry of the AR conditions may not meet standard criteria to be considered and AR by AR conditions (IVT >250 kg m-1 s-1 and IWV >20 mm) are expected to impact the majority of CA
  • Precipitation amounts up to 5 inches are expected over the Sierra Nevada with the majority of CA receiving at least 0.25 inches of precipitation
  • Forecast certainty is currently low on timing and strength of AR conditions but confidence of at least weak AR conditions over central and southern CA is high

Click IVT or IWV image to see loop of 72-180 hour GFS forecast

Valid 1200 UTC 3 November – 0000 UTC 8 November 2017


 

 

 

 

 

Summary provided by B. Kawzenuk, J. Kalansky, C. Hecht, and F.M. Ralph; 3 PM PT Tuesday 31 October 2017

*Outlook products are considered experimental

CW3E AR Update: 18-23 October 2017 Summary

CW3E AR Update: 18-23 October 2017 Summary

October 26, 2017

Click here for a pdf of this information.

Two Early Season Atmospheric Rivers Make Landfall over the Pacific Northwest

  • The first AR made landfall over WA and OR ~1200 UTC 18 October 2017
  • This AR produced >300 mm of precipitation over the Olympic Mountains in 72 hours (R-Cat 2)
  • The second AR made landfall over OR ~0600 UTC 21 October 2017
  • This AR produced >400 mm of precipitation over the Cascade Mountains in OR in 72 hours (R-Cat 3)

Click IVT or IWV image to see loop of GFS analysis

Valid 0000 UTC 18 October – 0000 UTC 24 October 2017

SSMI/SSMIS/AMSR2-derived Integrated Water Vapor (IWV)

Valid 0000 UTC 18 October – 0000 UTC 24 October 2017

Images from CIMSS/Univ. of Wisconsin

 

 

 

 

Summary provided by B. Kawzenuk, C. Hecht, and F.M. Ralph; 1 PM PT Thursday 26 October 2017

CW3E Graduate Student Participates in 18th Biennial Cyclone Workshop

CW3E Graduate Student Participates in 18th Biennial Cyclone Workshop

October 23, 2017

On 1-6 October 2017, CW3E graduate student Reuben Demirdjian had the opportunity to attend the 18th Biennial Cyclone Workshop at the hotel Mont Gabriel in Mont in Sainte-Adèle Quebec, Canada hosted by the State University of New York at Albany. Discussion topics included research on any cyclone related meteorological phenomena ranging from extra to tropical cyclones on synoptic and mesoscales. Reuben gave a talk on his recent research focused on observing low-level jets within atmospheric rivers using hundreds of dropsonde observations from recent CalWater I, I and El Niño Rapid Response winter field campaigns. Following his talk, he discussed his work with several senior researchers and professors who provided feedback and suggestions on possible methodologies to implement in order to test his hypotheses. The results of the meeting will improve Reuben and CW3E’s current research and motivate new topics.

Group photo of the workshop participants. Reuben is pictured first from the left in the fourth row.

CW3E Graduate Student to Participate in United Nations Convention Next Month

CW3E Graduate Student to Participate in United Nations Convention Next Month

October 23, 2017

Tashiana Osborne, a graduate student within CW3E, will be attending the 23rd United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Bonn, Germany next month. During the convention, Tashiana will lead a press conference centered on oceanic and atmospheric phenomena with another Scripps student. Her attendance at the Convention along with two other Scripps graduate students was highlighted in a recent San Diego Union Tribune article. Tashiana was interviewed about atmospheric rivers and their importance to California’s water supply as well as their potential to lead to flooding. Read more here about Tashiana and other graduate students heading to the Convention on Climate Change.

CW3E AR Update: 18 October 2017 Outlook

CW3E AR Update: 18 October 2017 Outlook

October 18, 2017

Click here for a pdf of this information.

Multiple ARs forecast to Impact U.S. West Coast

  • A potentially extreme AR is forecast to make landfall over the Pacific Northwest today
  • NWS precipitation forecasts show accumulations of ~10 inches for the Olympic Mountains in northwest Washington
  • A second AR is forecast to make landfall on Saturday, though forecast uncertainty is currently high
  • Total 5-day precipitation accumulations could be as high as 15.5 inches
  • Current soil conditions are dry which could lead to less runoff and lower flooding potential

Click IVT or IWV image to see loop of 0-141 hour GFS forecast

Valid 0600 UTC 18 October – 0300 UTC 24 October 2017

For more information on the satellite imagery and the configuration click here

 

 

 

 

 

 

Summary provided by C. Hecht, B. Kawzenuk, and F.M. Ralph; 1 PM PT Wednesday 18 October 2017

*Outlook products are considered experimental

CW3E, UCAR, and NCAR Meet to Discuss West-WRF Regional Model Development

CW3E, UCAR, and NCAR Meet to Discuss West-WRF Regional Model Development

October 9, 2017

On 4-5 October 2017, CW3E had the privilege of hosting visitors from NCAR and UCAR to discuss the development and implementation of West-WRF, the regional forecast model that CW3E is developing focusing on extreme precipitation. The team from UCAR and NCAR included Bill Kuo, the director of UCAR Community Programs, who also helped lead the development of WRF. Chris Davis, NCAR associate director and leader of the Mesoscale and Microscale Meteorology (MMM) Laboratory also attended, along with, David Gill, Jake Liu, and Wei Wang, WRF experts in computation, data assimilation, and modeling, respectively.

The first day of the two day visit began with CW3E director, Marty Ralph, briefing the NCAR/UCAR visitors on CW3E, and how West-WRF supports the mission and goals of the center. After this introduction, CW3E researchers and staff had the opportunity to learn about best practices with respect to WRF computation, modeling, and data assimilation, as well as the new MPAS modeling system. The entire CW3E group had lunch with the NCAR/UCAR visitors and had a chance to hear all the CW3E updates including on AR reconnaissance, publications, and instrument deployments.

After lunch, the CW3E West-WRF team shared the current applications and status of the West-WRF development with the UCAR/NCAR team. The afternoon ended with Bill Kuo giving the CASPO seminar on assessment of the impacts of assimilation of COSMIC radio occultation measurements in typhoon forecasts. The second day of the visit, allowed for detailed discussions on many of the technical aspects of West-WRF development and applications. The UCAR/NCAR team provided recommendations to the CW3E researches and staff on ways to improve the implantation of West-WRF as well as design experiments. In addition the groups discussed ways for the CW3E team to provide feedback in the WRF development at NCAR/UCAR through sharing new code for verification metrics and scientific and technical advancements made through recent experiments. The meeting was a very productive initial collaboration between CW3E and UCAR/NCAR and we are looking forward to many more. The engagement of UCAR and NCAR in supporting one of its member institutions technical development efforts is greatly appreciated.

CW3E Graduate Student Accepted into Science Policy Fellows Program

CW3E Graduate Student Accepted into Science Policy Fellows Program

October 3, 2017

Third-year graduate student, Meredith Fish, has been accepted into the Science Policy Fellows Program at the School of Global Policy and Strategy (GPS). The fellowship, which is open to Ph.D. candidates at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, Jacobs School of Engineering and School of Medicine, works with GPS faculty to discover the policy relevance and potential implications of their dissertation. Created with the goal of bridging physical and social sciences across the UC San Diego campus, the students gain an understanding of the benefits of using a multidisciplinary approach to help solve some of our global issues.

Meredith will be working with GPS faculty members, Kate Ricke and Jennifer Burney, on the policy implications of successive atmospheric rivers (ARs). ARs are a large contributor to California’s water supply, providing approximately 50% of it’s water year precipitation, but can also have negative impacts, such as widespread flooding and debris flows. Families of events, which are defined as ARs that successively occur within 120 hours of each other, can have enhanced impacts as pre-conditioning from the first AR can elevate the chances of high streamflow and saturated soils, which leads to shorter time frames to safely release stored water downstream. She will work with her GPS mentors on the issues of aging infrastructure, snowpack becoming a less reliable water storage system, and the potentials of implementing a flexible rule curve for dam operators.

The fellowship will conclude with a presentation of the fellow’s research findings in the spring quarter. The fellow will also have the opportunity to attend policy-related seminars, workshops and courses.

CW3E graduate student, Meredith Fish (center), with her GPS Faculty Mentors Kate Ricke (left), and Jennifer Burney (right).