Articles | Volume 8, issue 1
31 Jul 2012
 | 31 Jul 2012

A quantitative evaluation of the high resolution HARMONIE model for critical weather phenomena

E. V. van der Plas, B. Wichers Schreur, and K. Kok

Abstract. The high resolution non-hydrostatic Harmonie model (Seity et al., 2012) seems capable of delivering high quality precipitation forecasts. The quality with respect to the European radar composite is assessed using the Model Evaluation Tool, as distributed by the NCAR DTC (Developmental Testbed Center, 2012), and compared to that of the reference run of Hirlam (Unden et al., 2002), the current operational NWP model at KNMI. Both neighbourhood and object-based verification methods are compared for a week with several high intensity precipitation events in July 2010. It is found that Hirlam scores very well in most metrics, and that in spite of the higher resolution the added value of the Harmonie model is sometimes hard to quantify. However, higher precipitation intensities are better represented in the Harmonie model with its higher resolution. Object-based methods do not yet yield a sharp distinction between the different models, as it proves difficult to construct a meaningful and distinguishing metric with a solid physical basis for the many settings that can be varied.