Atmospheric River Reconnaissance

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Atmospheric River Reconnaissance 2022 Workshop

24 – 26 October, 2022

Scripps Seaside Forum, La Jolla, CA

Hosted by the Center for Western Weather and Water Extremes

Atmospheric River Reconnaissance: A Research and Operations Partnership (RAOP) Improving Predictions of Land-falling Atmospheric Rivers in the U.S.

From 2015 to 2022, AR Recon grew from a concept to a field demonstration to an operational requirement and mission. It has gone from 3 storms flown over 2 weeks in 2016 to over 20 flown each year since 2020 during the period January – March. Currently, AR Recon uses two Air Force C-130s and the NOAA G-IV to carry out dropsonde missions and has partnered with NOAA’s Global Drifter Program (PI: Luca Centurioni) to deploy roughly 180 drifting buoys with pressure sensors since 2019. AR Recon also supports innovative technologies such as Airborne Radio Occultation (ARO; PI: Jennifer Haase). Flight planning and calling of missions is carried out by a diverse team of scientists and forecasters, who consider input from multiple objective targeting methods and fundamental physical principles. A steering committee for modeling and data assimilation consisting of a multi-agency team of global modeling and science centers is working together to document and enhance utility and impacts of the data. Multiple motivations, including robust demonstrations of success to date have led to expansion on multiple fronts for Water Year 2023 and beyond: expansion of the entire season to begin October 1; doubling of the Global Drifter Program pressure sensor upgrades to include an equal amount in the NW Pacific (with a goal of 128 total drifters deployed per season); and development of two Working Groups, one focused on ARO data collection and assimilation, and the other focused on expanding AR Recon to cover the Gulf of Mexico and western Atlantic.

Workshop Purpose: Document Impacts and Envision AR Recon in 2030

The goals are to share results, to coordinate and inspire future work on data collection, data assimilation, metric development and impact assessment, and to discuss the Research And Operations Partnership (RAOP) approach pioneered by AR Recon


If you would like to present a poster contact Anna Wilson (AR Recon Coordinator).

The Workshop will bring together current participants and interested experts to share results of modeling, data assimilation and impact studies and to consider next steps for future field seasons now that this RAOP is in its Implementation Phase. It will cover the following topics, using oral and poster sessions, as well as panel discussions:

  • Sensitivity, sampling strategies, and targeting methods for essential atmospheric structures
  • Diagnostic, verification, and validation methods including use of the AR scale
  • Data assimilation and observation impact studies, including new methods
  • Evaluate downstream impacts of AR Recon in the central and eastern US
  • Expansion of AR Recon to include events originating in the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic
  • Identify leading sources of forecast errors, including role of mesoscale frontal waves and systematic model errors
  • Physical process studies enabled by AR Recon in support of western water applications
  • New observations and observing systems
  • Tying observing and modeling strategies directly to impacts, including economic quantification
  • Potential for collaboration with colleagues across the globe
  • Extended range prediction (including MJO influence)
  • Discuss a vision for AR Recon – 2030

Hotel Information: If you will be attending in person, we have rooms reserved at the Hotel La Jolla, which is about a 1 mile walk from the venue (Scripps Seaside Forum – see event info). The rate for 10/23-10/27 is $161/night, to book a room click here.

This workshop is invitation only. If you are interested in participating and did not receive the invitation or for any other questions contact Anna Wilson (AR Recon Coordinator).

F. Martin Ralph (Workshop Co-Chair), Center for Western Weather and Water Extremes at UC San Diego/Scripps Institution of Oceanography (CW3E)

Vijay Tallapragada (Workshop Co-Chair), NOAA/NWS/NCEP/Environmental Modeling Center (EMC)

Chris Davis, National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR)

Luca Delle Monache, Center for Western Weather and Water Extremes, UC San Diego (CW3E)

Jim Doyle, Naval Research Laboratory (NRL)

Florian Pappenberger, European Center for Medium-range Weather Forecasting (ECMWF)

Carolyn Reynolds, Naval Research Laboratory (NRL)

Aneesh Subramanian, University of Colorado Boulder