An update on THORPEX-related research in data assimilation and observing strategies
Abstract. The international programme "THORPEX: a World Weather Research Programme" provides a framework in which to tackle the challenge of improving the forecast skill of high-impact weather through international collaboration between academic institutions, operational forecast centres, and users of forecast products. The objectives of the THORPEX Data Assimilation and Observation Strategy Working Group (DAOS-WG) are two-fold. The primary goal is to assess the impact of observations and various targeting methods to provide guidance for observation campaigns and for the configuration of the Global Observing System. The secondary goal is to setup an optimal framework for data assimilation, including aspects such as targeted observations, satellite data, background error covariances and quality control. The Atlantic THORPEX Regional campaign, ATReC, in 2003, has been very successful technically and has provided valuable datasets to test targeting issues. Various data impact experiments have been performed, showing a small but very slightly positive impact of targeted observations. Projects of the DAOS-WG include working on the AMMA field experiment, in the context of IPY and to prepare the future THORPEX-PARC field campaign in the Pacific by comparing sensitivity of the forecasts to observations between several groups.