An assimilation and forecasting experiment of the Nerima heavy rainfall with a cloud-resolving nonhydrostatic 4-dimensional variational data assimilation system

Kawabata, T.; Seko, H.; Saito, K.; Kuroda, T.; Tamiya, K.; Tsuyuki, T.; Honda, Y.; Wakazuki, Y.

Journal of the Meteorological Society of Japan 85(3): 255-276


ISSN/ISBN: 0026-1165
Accession: 015014160

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The Meteorological Research Institute of the Japan Meteorological Agency has developed a cloud-resolving nonhydrostatic 4-dimensional variational assimilation system (NHM-4DVAR), based on the Japan Meteorological Agency Nonhydrostatic Model (JMA-NHM), in order to investigate the mechanism of heavy rainfall events induced by mesoscale convective systems (MCSs). A horizontal resolution of the NHM-4DVAR is set to 2 km to resolve MCSs, and the length of the assimilation window is 1-hour. The control variables of the NHM-4DVAR are horizontal wind, vertical wind, nonhydrostatic pressure, potential temperature, surface pressure and pseudo relative humidity. Perturbations to the dynamical processes, and the advection of water vapour are considered, but these to the other physical processes are not taken into account. The NHM-4DVAR is applied to the heavy rainfall event observed at Nerima, central part of Tokyo metropolitan area, on 21 July 1999. Doppler radar's radial wind data, Global Positioning System's precipitable water vapour data, and surface temperature and wind data are assimilated as high temporal and spatial resolution data. The Nerima heavy rainfall is well reproduced in the assimilation and subsequent forecast, with respect to time sequence of 10-minute rainfall amount. The formation mechanism of the Nerima heavy rainfall is clarified from this study. A surface convergence line of horizontal winds was made of a southerly sea breeze and north-easterly winds over the Kanto plain around Nerima. Since the rise of temperature over the northern part of the Kanto plain was suppressed, due to a shield of clouds against sunshine, the difference of temperature between the convergence line and its northern side became large. Consequently, the wind convergence was enhanced around Nerima. An air with high equivalent potential temperature was lifted over this enhanced convergence line to generate cumulonimbi that caused the Nerima heavy rainfall.