Impacts of potential aircraft observations on forecasts of tropical cyclones over the western North Pacific
Mitchell, Mark C.
Harr, Patrick A.
Nuss, Wendell A.
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A goal of The Observing System Research and Predictability Experiment (THORPEX) Pacific Asian Regional Campaign (T-PARC) that was conducted in 2008 over the western North Pacific was to examine the targeted observation for improving initial conditions of numerical forecasts of typhoon track and intensity. Results indicated that observation impacts depended on the location of the observation with respect to the storm and the altitude from which the observation provided a profile of winds, temperature, and moisture. In this thesis, the experiment results were augmented by testing the impact of observations that could potentially be obtained from an unmanned Global Hawk aircraft taking observations over the large-scale environment from an altitude that provided for profiles of the entire troposphere. The case of Typhoon Sinlaku is used as operational typhoon track forecast scenarios were highly uncertain and research-based aircraft observations were available to test against the pseudo Global Hawk observations. Three numerical experiments are conducted such that initial conditions were based on conventional observations, conventional and inner-storm aircraft observations and conventional and pseudo Global Hawk observations. Inclusion of pseudo Global Hawk observations resulted in the most accurate intensity forecasts but track forecasts were best using observations of the storm inner core.
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