Major upgrade next year to the Global Forecast System (GFS)

NOAA/NWS selected the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL) finite­ volume cubed-sphere (FV3) dynamical core as the NWS Next Generation Global Prediction System (NGGPS).  The current operational GFS, which has a spectral dynamical core, will be replaced by the proposed GFS with FV3 dynamical core and improved physics parameterizations in the second quarter of Fiscal Year 2019.

The proposed GFS version maintains a horizontal resolution of 13 km and has 64 levels in the vertical extending up to 0.2 mb.  It uses the same physics package as the current operational GFS except for:

-Replacing Zhao-Carr microphysics with the more advanced GFDL microphysics

-Updating parameterization of ozone photochemistry with additional production and loss terms

-Introducing parameterization of middle atmospheric water vapor photochemistry

-Revising bare soil evaporation scheme

The data assimilation system will be updated to include:

  • Infrared Atmospheric Sounding Interferometer (IASI) moisture channels

  • Advanced Technology Microwave Sounder (ATMS) all-sky radiances

  • Fix for an issue with the Near Sea Surface Temperature (NSST) in the Florida Strait

  • Upgrade to the use of Cross-track Infrared Sounder (CrIS) radiances

  • NOAA-20 CrIS and ATMS data

  • Megha-Tropiques SAPHIR data

  • Advanced Scatterometer (ASCAT) data from MetOp-B


Scott Dennstaedt

View posts by Scott Dennstaedt
CFI and former NWS research meteorologist. Co-founder of WeatherSpork
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