The impact of Aeolus winds on near-surface wind forecasts over tropical ocean and high-latitude regions

Haichen Zuo*, Charlotte Bay Hasager

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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To detect global wind profiles and improve numerical weather prediction (NWP), the European Space Agency (ESA) launched the Aeolus satellite carrying a spaceborne Doppler wind lidar in 2018. After the successful launch, the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) performed the observing system experiments (OSEs) to evaluate the contribution of Aeolus data to NWP. This study aims to assess the impact of Aeolus wind assimilation in the ECMWF model on near-surface (10ĝ€¯m height) wind forecasts over tropical ocean regions by taking buoy measurements for reference and over high-latitude regions by taking weather station data for reference for the year 2020. The assessments were conducted mainly through inter-comparison analysis. The results show that Aeolus data assimilation has a limited impact on sea surface wind forecasts for tropical regions when compared with buoy measurements. For the high-latitude regions in the Northern Hemisphere, Aeolus is able to improve near-surface wind forecasts. This positive impact is more evident as the forecast time step is extended, during the first half year of 2020 and during the winter months. In addition, the v component tends to benefit more from the Aeolus observations than the u component. For the Southern Hemisphere, a few error reductions are observed but exist randomly. Overall, this in situ data-based assessment expands our understanding of the role of Aeolus data assimilation with the global NWP model in predicting near-surface wind for tropical oceans and high-latitude regions.
Original languageEnglish
JournalAtmospheric Measurement Techniques
Pages (from-to)3901-3913
Number of pages13
Publication statusPublished - 2023


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