The regime dependence of optimally weighted ensemble model consensus forecasts of surface temperature

Steven J. Greybush, Sue Ellen Haupt, George S. Young

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


Previous methods for creating consensus forecasts weight individual ensemble members based upon their relative performance over the previous N days, implicitly making a short-term persistence assumption about the underlying flow regime. A postprocessing scheme in which model performance is linked to underlying weather regimes could improve the skill of deterministic ensemble model consensus forecasts. Here, principal component analysis of several synopticm- and mesoscale fields from the North American Regional Reanalysis dataset provides an objective means for characterizing atmospheric regimes. Clustering techniques, including K-means and a genetic algorithm, are developed that use the resulting principal components to distinguish among the weather regimes. This pilot study creates a weighted consensus from 48-h surface temperature predictions produced by the University of Washington Mesoscale Ensemble, a variedmodel (differing physics and parameterization schemes) multianalysis ensemble with eight members. Different optimal weights are generated for each weather regime. A second regime-dependent consensus technique uses linear regression to predict the relative performance of the ensemble members based upon the principal components. Consensus forecasts obtained by the regime-dependent schemes are compared using cross validation with traditional N-day ensemble consensus forecasts for four locations in the Pacific Northwest, and show improvement over methods that rely on the short-term persistence assumption.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1146-1161
Number of pages16
JournalWeather and Forecasting
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Atmospheric Science


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