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Sensitivity of Calibrated Week-2 Probabilistic Forecast Skill to Reforecast Sampling of the NCEP Global Ensemble Forecast System
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    Weather and Forecasting, 31(4), 1093-1107.
Filetype[PDF-2.63 MB]

  • Description:
    CPC requires the reforecast-calibrated Global Ensemble Forecast System (GEFS) to support the production of their official 6-10- and 8-14-day temperature and precipitation forecasts. While a large sample size of forecast-observation pairs is desirable to generate the necessary model climatology and variances, and covariances to observations, sampling by reforecasts could be done to use available computing resources most efficiently. A series of experiments was done to assess the impact on calibrated forecast skill of using a smaller sample size than the current available reforecast dataset. This study focuses on the skill of week-2 probabilistic forecasts of the 7-day-mean 2-m temperature and accumulated precipitation. The tercile forecasts are expressed as being below-, near-, and above-normal temperature/median precipitation over the continental United States (CONUS). Calibration statistics were calculated using an ensemble regression technique from 25 yr of daily, 11-member GEFS reforecasts for 1986-2010, which were then used to postprocess the GEFS model forecasts for 2011-13. In assessing the skill of calibrated model output using a reforecast dataset with fewer years and ensemble members, and an ensemble run less frequently than daily, it was determined that reductions in the number of ensemble members to six or fewer and reductions in the frequency of reforecast runs from daily to once a week were achievable with minimal loss of skill. However, reducing the number of years of reforecasts to less than 25 resulted in a greater skill degradation. The loss of skill was statistically significant using only 18 yr of reforecasts from 1993 to 2010 to generate model statistics.
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