ARL Weekly News – November 9, 2018

ATDD’s Howard Diamond and Tilden Meyers participated in NOAA’s Climate Program Office (CPO) Earth System Science and Modeling meeting November 6-7 in Silver Spring, Maryland, along with ARL’s Acting Director, Dr. Ariel Stein. Diamond presented “Air Resources Laboratory’s Role in a Bedrock to Boundary Layer (B2B) Initiative” and Meyers co-presented “A Multi-Lab Integrated Observation and Modeling Approach to Understanding Land-Atmosphere Interactions: A Bedrock-to-Boundary Layer (B2B) Approach.” For more information, please visit

Rick Saylor attended the 9th International Workshop on Air Quality Forecasting Research (IWAQFR) in Boulder, CO, and co-chaired a session on “Using Observations for Model Evaluation and Improvement”. The IWAQFR meetings bring together scientists from around the world to exchange recent research findings in the area of air quality (AQ) forecasting research. This year’s meeting was hosted by the NOAA Earth System Research Laboratory.

Bruce Baker provided input for NOAA’s response to a congressional inquiry from Oregon Senators regarding the U.S. Drought Monitor. The Department of Commerce had reviewed the draft response to the letter and requested some additional information on how the U.S. Climate Reference Network soil moisture sensors are being used.

After more than 34 years of federal service, FRD’s Administrative Officer Donna Davis has decided to retire at the end of the year. Prior to coming to FRD, Donna worked at the National Weather Service Office in Pocatello. Donna has been very effective at keeping the division on track, and her detailed knowledge and efficient work will be sorely missed. We wish Donna all the best in her retirement adventures. FRD has approval to fill the Administrative Officer position and is in the initial stages of the hiring process.


November 7: Tianfeng Chai, Hyun Cheol Kim, and Ariel Stein presented “Estimating smoke emissions by assimilating satellite observations with the HYSPLIT model.” The audience received the talk as a creative new tool addressing some of the major uncertainties in AQ modeling. Barry Baker and Alice Crawford presented “Developments and Improvements to the Model and ObservatioN Evaluation Tool (MONET) for atmospheric pollutant mode.” The poster was viewed with a level of popularity since all modelers evaluate available tools and MONET is an open domain tool designed to be user-friendly. Patrick Campbell and non-ARL collaborators presented “A tiled land cover composition approach in the Model for Prediction Across Scales – Atmosphere (MPAS -A): Implications for meteorology and atmospheric deposition.” Campbell and his co-presenters challenged the audience to think about surface exchange, which is a large topic. In fact, the Air Quality Model Evaluation International Initiative (AQEMII), spearheaded by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts, specifically emphasizes surface exchange processes.

November 8: Rick Saylor co-chaired the session: Using Observations for Model Evaluation and Improvement. The session was well-received with new aspects such as AQ models and the audience was challenged to think unconventionally since meteorologist have been shying away from evaluating planetary boundary layer height and radiative fluxes. Barry Baker, Daniel Tong, and Rick Saylor presented “Recent developments of the FENGSHA dust emission module: Implementation into FV3” within a suite of talks on Finite Volume Cubed-Sphere Dynamical Core (FV3). This talk raised a lot of interest since dust is chemically inert in this application and advection, diffusion, and turbulence parameterization of FV3 can be thoroughly tested. Pius Lee was among the presenters of “CHEM and future developments Mesoscale Modeling of the Canadian wildfire smoke transported within the Planetary Boundary Layer in Maryland.” Much of the evaluation for this well-received talk was accomplished via the University of Maryland, Baltimore County’s proprietary lidar data. The work was encouraged to progress forward as the lead presenter’s PhD thesis. Pius Lee, Youhua Tang, and Daniel Tong, were among the presenters for “Evaluation of NCEP model Planetary Boundary Layer Mixing Processes and Impacts on Air Quality,” part of which encouraged the audience to help FV3 evaluation.

November 9: Pius Lee, Youhua Tang, Daniel Tong, and Barry Baker, were among the presenters of “Potential Performance differences of the National Air Quality Forecasting Capability when upgrading the Chemical Transport Model.” This talk concluded with important questions about boundary and initial conditions, as well as how evaluation work should include vertical profile verifications.