Ingredients of Good Forecasting

There are 2 key ingredients for weather forecasting

1. High Resolution

High Resolution – resolves the structures that produce high-impact events (e.g. wind ramps and severe convection). Group NIRE and TTU forecasts provide more resolution and clarity on where and when a weather event will occur.

These weather events include: isolated thunderstorms, cold snaps, tornados, blizzards and hail storms.

2. Ensemble Prediction

Ensemble Prediction – simultaneous integration of various model runs, that differ by their initial conditions or physics, help characterize forecast uncertainty. By running 50 separate weather modules, Group NIRE and TTU’s forecasts show the probabilities for any possible weather event. Only by running 50 modules, can an accurate probability be determined for the operators in the following industries:

  • Agricultural users: farmers and ranchers.
  • Transportation users: air traffic controllers, UPS and distribution companies.
  • Energy users: electric grid generators, transmissions and distribution companies.

The difference between Models

High Wind Event

High wind events possess an important fine-scale structure that must be resolved to produce accurate wind forecasts.

12km/4km 24-hour Texas/New Mexico Surface Wind Speed Forecast

Coarse Structure (poor representation}

12km

Fine Scale Structure (accurate representation}

4km

Dry Line Passage

An accurate dry line prediction (4km) will improve the forecast of associated weather such as wind ramps (timing and magnitude) and thunderstorm outflows.

12km/4km 24-hour Texas Surface Dew Point Forecast

Single, diffuse dry line (poor representation}

12km

Double, tight dry line (accurate representation}

4km