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Discussion papers | Copyright
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 19 Jul 2018

Research article | 19 Jul 2018

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Ocean Science (OS).

Upscaling of regional models into basin-wide models

Luc Vandenbulcke1,2 and Alexander Barth3 Luc Vandenbulcke and Alexander Barth
  •, Jailoo srl, Romania
  • 2MAST, Université de Liège, Belgium
  • 3GHER, Université de Liège, Belgium

Abstract. Traditionnally, in order for lower-resolution, global- or basin-scale models to benefit from some of the improvements available in higher-resolution regional or coastal models, two-way nesting has to be used. This implies that the parent and child models have to be run together and there is an online exchange of information between both models. This approach is often impossible in operational systems, where different model codes are run by different institutions, often in different countries. Therefor, in practice, these systems use one-way nesting with data transfer only from the large-scale model to the regional models. In this article, it is examined whether it is possible to replace the missing model feedback by data assimilation, avoiding the need to run the models simultaneously. Selected variables from the high-resolution forecasts will be used as pseudo-observations, and assimilated in the lower-resolution models. The method will be called upscaling.

A realistic test-case is set up with a model covering the Mediterranean Sea, and a nested model covering its North-Western basin. A simulation using only the basin-scale model is compared with a simulation where both models are run using one-way nesting, and using the upscaling technique on the temperature and salinity variables. It is shown that the representation of some processes, such as the Rhône river plume, are strongly improved in the upscaled model compared to the stand-alone model.

Luc Vandenbulcke and Alexander Barth
Interactive discussion
Status: open (extended)
Status: open (extended)
AC: Author comment | RC: Referee comment | SC: Short comment | EC: Editor comment
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Luc Vandenbulcke and Alexander Barth
Luc Vandenbulcke and Alexander Barth
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Latest update: 15 Oct 2018
Publications Copernicus
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Short summary
In operational oceanography, regional and local models use large-scale models (such as those run by CMEMS) for their initial and/or boundary conditions, but unfortunately there is no feedback that improves the large-scale models. The present study aims at replacing normal 2-way nesting by a data assimilation technique. This upscaling method is tried out in the North-Western Mediterranean Sea using the Nemo model, and shows that the basin-scale model indeed benefits from the nested model.
In operational oceanography, regional and local models use large-scale models (such as those run...