Combining Hybrid and One-Step-Ahead Smoothing for Efficient Short-Range Storm Surge Forecasting with an Ensemble Kalman Filter

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This work combines two auxiliary techniques, namely the one-step-ahead (OSA) smoothing and the hybrid formulation, to boost the forecasting skills of a storm surge Ensemble Kalman filter (EnKF) forecasting system. Bayesian filtering with OSA-smoothing enhances the robustness of the ensemble background statistics by exploiting the data twice, first to constrain the sampling of the forecast ensemble with the future observation, and then to update the resulting ensemble. This is expected to improve the behavior of EnKF-like schemes during the strongly nonlinear surges periods, but requires integrating the ensemble with the forecast model twice, which could be computationally demanding. The hybrid flow-dependent/static formulation of the EnKF background error covariance is then considered to enable the implementation of the filter with a small flow-dependent ensemble size, and thus less model runs. These two methods are combined within an ensemble transform Kalman filter (ETKF). The resulting hybrid ETKF with OSA smoothing is tested, based on twin experiments, using a realistic setting of the Advanced Circulation (ADCIRC) model configured for storm surge forecasting in the Gulf of Mexico and assimilating pseudo-observations of sea surface levels from a network of buoys. The results of our numerical experiments suggest that the proposed filtering system significantly enhances ADCIRC forecasting skills compared to the standard ETKF without increasing the computational cost.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3283-3300
Number of pages18
JournalMonthly Weather Review
Issue number9
StatePublished - Jun 14 2019

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2020-10-01
Acknowledged KAUST grant number(s): CRG3-2156
Acknowledgements: This work is supported by King Abdullah University of Science and Technology Awards CRG3-2156. The research made use of the Shaheen super computer resources.


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