On the effect of model parameters on forecast objects
- 1Applied Physics Laboratory, Univ. of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195 USA
- 2Department of Statistics, Univ. of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195 USA
Abstract. Many physics-based numerical models produce a gridded, spatial field of forecasts, e.g., a temperature
map. The field for some quantities generally consists of spatially coherent and disconnected
objects. Such objects arise in many problems, including precipitation forecasts in atmospheric models, eddy currents in ocean models, and models of forest fires. Certain features of these objects (e.g., location, size, intensity, and shape) are generally of interest. Here, a methodology is developed for assessing the impact of model parameters on the features of forecast objects. The main ingredients of the methodology include the use of (1) Latin hypercube sampling for varying the values of the model parameters, (2) statistical clustering algorithms for identifying objects, (3) multivariate multiple regression for assessing the impact of multiple model parameters on the distribution (across the forecast domain) of object features, and (4) methods for reducing the number of hypothesis tests and controlling the resulting errors. The final
output of the methodology is a series of box plots and confidence intervals that visually display the sensitivities. The methodology is demonstrated on precipitation forecasts from a mesoscale numerical weather prediction model.