Articles | Volume 8, issue 4
Atmos. Chem. Phys., 8, 787–798, 2008

Special issue: Dust storm forecast and early warning in East Asia

Atmos. Chem. Phys., 8, 787–798, 2008

  18 Feb 2008

18 Feb 2008

Development and evaluation of an operational SDS forecasting system for East Asia: CUACE/Dust

C. H. Zhou1, S. L. Gong1,2, X. Y. Zhang1, Y. Q. Wang1, T. Niu1, H. L. Liu1, T. L. Zhao2, Y. Q. Yang1, and Q. Hou1 C. H. Zhou et al.
  • 1Centre for Atmosphere Watch & Services (CAWAS), Chinese Academy of Meteorological Sciences, China Meteorological Administration (CMA), Beijing 100081, China
  • 2Air Quality Research Division, Science & Technology Branch, Environment Canada, 4905 Dufferin Street, Toronto, Ontario M3H 5T4, Canada

Abstract. CUACE/Dust, an operational mesoscale sand and dust storm (SDS) forecasting system for East Asia, has been developed by online coupling a dust aerosol emission scheme and dust aerosol microphysics onto a regional meteorological model with improved advection and diffusion schemes and a detailed Northeast Asia soil erosion database. With improved initial dust aerosol conditions through a 3-DVar data assimilation system, CUACE/Dust successfully forecasted most of the 31 SDS processes in East Asia. A detailed comparison of the model predictions for the 8–12 March SDS process with surface network observations and lidar measurements revealed a robust forecasting ability of the system. The time series of the operationally forecasted dust concentrations for a number of representative stations for the whole spring 2006 (1 March–31 May) were evaluated against surface PM10 monitoring data, showing a good agreement in terms of the SDS timing and magnitudes at and near the source regions where dust aerosols dominate. For the operational forecasts of spring 2006 in East Asia, a TS (threat score) system evaluated the performance of CUACE/Dust against all available observations and rendered a spring averaged TS value of 0.31 for FT1 (24 h forecasts), 0.23 for FT2 (48 h forecasts) and 0.21 for FT3 (72 h forecasts).

Final-revised paper