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Discussion papers | Copyright
https://doi.org/10.5194/os-2018-38
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 05 Apr 2018

Research article | 05 Apr 2018

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This discussion paper is a preprint. A revision of the manuscript is under review for the journal Ocean Science (OS).

Dense CTD survey versus glider fleet sampling: comparison of the performance for regional ocean prediction West of Sardinia

Jaime Hernandez-Lasheras and Baptiste Mourre Jaime Hernandez-Lasheras and Baptiste Mourre
  • Balearic Islands Coastal Observing and Forecasting System – SOCIB

Abstract. The REP14-MEDsea trial carried out off the West coast of Sardinia in June 2014 provided a rich set of observations from both ship-based CTDs and a fleet of underwater gliders. We present the results of several simulations assimilating data either from CTDs or from different subsets of glider data, including up to 8 vehicles, in addition to satellite sea level anomalies, surface temperature and Argo profiles. The WMOP regional ocean model is used with a Local Mutimodel Ensemble Optimal Interpolation scheme to recursively ingest both lower-resolution large scale and dense local observations over the whole sea trial duration. Results show the capacity of the system to ingest both type of data, leading to improvements in the representation of all assimilated variables. These improvements persist during the 3-day periods separating two analysis. At the same time, the system presents some limitations in properly representing the smaller scale structures, which are smoothed out by the model error covariances provided by the ensemble. An evaluation of the forecasts using independent measurements from shipborne CTDs and a towed Scanfish deployed at the end of the sea trial shows that the simulations assimilating initial CTD data reduce the error by 30 to 40% (according to the variable under consideration) with respect to the simulation without data assimilation. In the glider-data-assimilative experiments, the forecast error is reduced as the number of vehicles increases. The simulation assimilating CTDs outperforms the simulations assimilating data from one to four gliders. A fleet of eight gliders provides a similar performance as the 10-km spaced CTD initilization survey in these experiments, with an overall 40% model error reduction capacity with respect to the simulation without data assimilation.

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Jaime Hernandez-Lasheras and Baptiste Mourre
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Jaime Hernandez-Lasheras and Baptiste Mourre
Jaime Hernandez-Lasheras and Baptiste Mourre
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