5 years ago

Weather forecast performances for complex orographic areas: Impact of different grid resolutions and of geographic data on heavy rainfall event simulations in Sicily

Over the past decades, Sicily has undergone an increasing sequence of extreme weather events that have produced, besides huge damages to both environment and territory, the death of hundreds of people together with the evacuation of thousands of residents, which have permanently lost their properties. In this framework, with this paper we have investigated the impact of different grid spacing and geographic data on the performance of forecasts over complex orographic areas. In order to test the validity of this approach we have analyzed and discussed, as case study, the heavy rainfall occurred in Sicily during the night of October 10, 2015. In just 9h, a Mediterranean depression, centered on the Tunisian coastline, produced a violent mesoscale storm localized on the Peloritani Mountains with a maximum rain accumulation of about 200mm. The results of these simulations were obtained using the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF-ARW) Model, version 3.7.1, at different grid spacing values and the Two Way Nesting procedure with a sub-domain centered on the area of interest. The results highlighted that providing correct and timely forecasts of extreme weather events is a challenge that could have been efficiently and effectively countered using proper employment of high spatial resolution models.

Publisher URL: www.sciencedirect.com/science

DOI: S0169809516304811

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