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The use of bred vectors in the NCEP global 3-D variational analysis system
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  • Description:
    The errors in the first guess (forecast field) of an analysis system vary from day to day, but, as is the case in all operational data assimilation systems, forecast error covariances are assumed to be constant in time in the NCEP 3-dimensional variational analysis system (SSI). This study focuses on the investigation of the impact of modifying the error statistics by including effects of the "errors of the day" on the analysis system. An estimate of forecast uncertainty, as defined from the bred growing vectors of the NCEP operational global ensemble forecast, is applied in the NCEP operational SSI analysis. The growing vectors are used to estimate the spatially and temporally varying degree of uncertainty in the first guess forecasts used in the analysis. The measure of uncertainty is defined by a ratio of the local amplitude of the growing vectors, relative to a background amplitude measure over a large area. This ratio is used in the SSI system for adjusting the observational error term. Preliminary experiments show positive impact of this virtually cost-free method on the quality of the analysis and medium range weather forecasts, encouraging us to test it in the operational practice. The results of a 45-day parallel run, and a discussion of other methods to take advantage of the knowledge of the day-to-day variation in forecast uncertainties provided by the NCEP ensemble forecast system, are also presented in the paper.
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