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Geoscientific Model Development An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/gmd-2020-268
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/gmd-2020-268
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: methods for assessment of models 08 Oct 2020

Submitted as: methods for assessment of models | 08 Oct 2020

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This preprint is currently under review for the journal GMD.

Understanding the development of systematic errors in the Asian Summer Monsoon

Gill M. Martin, Richard C. Levine, José M. Rodriguez, and Michael Vellinga Gill M. Martin et al.
  • Met Office, Exeter, Devon, EX1 3PB, UK

Abstract. Despite the importance of monsoon rainfall to over half of the world’s population, many of the current generation of climate models struggle to capture some of the major features of the various monsoon systems. Studies of the development of errors in several tropical regions have shown that they start to develop very quickly, within the first few days of a model simulation, and can then persist to climate timescales. Understanding the sources of such errors requires the combination of various modelling techniques and sensitivity experiments of varying complexity. Here, we demonstrate how such analysis can shed light on the way in which monsoon errors develop, their local and remote drivers and feedbacks. We make use of the seamless modelling approach adopted by the Met Office, whereby different applications of the Met Office Unified Model (MetUM) use essentially the same model configuration (dynamical core and physical parametrisations) across a range of spatial and temporal scales. Using the Asian Summer Monsoon as an example, we show that error patterns in circulation and rainfall over the East Asia Summer Monsoon (EASM) region in the MetUM are similar between multi-decadal climate simulations and seasonal hindcasts initialised in spring. Analysis of the development of these errors on both short-range and seasonal timescales following model initialisation suggests that both the Maritime Continent and the oceans around the Philippines play a role in the development of EASM errors, with the Indian summer monsoon region providing an additional contribution. Regional modelling with various lateral boundary locations helps to separate local and remote contributions to the errors, while regional relaxation experiments shed light on the influence of errors developing within particular areas on the region as a whole.

Gill M. Martin et al.

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Gill M. Martin et al.

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Latest update: 23 Oct 2020
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Short summary
Our study highlights a number of different techniques that can be employed to investigate the sources of model error. We demonstrate how this methodology can be used to identify the regions and model components responsible for the development of long-standing errors in the Asian Summer Monsoon. Once these are known, further work can be done to explore the local processes contributing to this behaviour and their sensitivity to changes in physical parameterizations and/or model resolution.
Our study highlights a number of different techniques that can be employed to investigate the...
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