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Ocean-Atmosphere Observations Supporting Short-Term Climate Predictions Panel on Near-Term Development of Operational Ocean Observations TOGA Advisory Panel Climate Research Committee Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate Commission on Geosciences, Environment, and Resources National Research Council LY'Y)Lt': 'f'W .4L4. ... l ., Â· National Itc~\;aroli CcuntSll 2101 Constitution Avenue 1 1 Waehington D. a.. 10418 â¢ I NATIONAL ACADEMY PRESS Washington, D.C. 1994
NOTICE: The project that is the subject of this report was approved by the Governing Board of the National Research Council, whose members are drawn from the councils of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. This report has been reviewed by a group other than the authors according to procedures approved by a Report Review Committee consisting of members of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. The National Academy of Sciences is a private, nonprofit, self-perpetuating society of distinguished scholars engaged in scientific and engineering research, dedicated to the further- ance of science and technology and to their use for the general welfare. Upon the authority of the charter granted to it by the Congress in 1863, the Academy has a mandate that requires it to advise the federal government on scientific and technical matters. Dr. Bruce Alberts is presi- dent of the National Academy of Sciences. The National Academy of Engineering was established in 1964, under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences, as a parallel organization of outstanding engineers. It is autonomous in its administration and in the selection of its members, sharing with the National Academy of Sciences the responsibility for advising the federal government. The National Academy of Engineering also sponsors engineering programs aimed at meeting national needs, encourages education and research, and recognizes the superior achievements of engineers. Dr. Robert M. White is president of the National Academy of Engineering. The Institute of Medicine was established in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences to secure the services of eminent members of appropriate professions in the examination of policy matters pertaining to the health of the public. The Institute acts under the responsibility given to the National Academy of Sciences by its congressional charter to be an adviser to the federal government and, upon its own initiative, to identify issues of medical care, research, and education. Dr. Kenneth I. Shine is president of the Institute of Medicine. The National Research Council was organized by the National Academy of Sciences in 1916 to associate the broad community of science and technology with the Academy's pur- poses of furthering knowledge and advising the federal government. Functioning in accor- dance with general policies determined by the Academy, the Council has become the principal operating agency of both the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy Â·of Engineering in providing services to the government, the public, and the scientific and engi- neering communities. The Council is administered jointly by both Academies and the Institute of Medicine. Dr. Bruce Alberts and Dr. Robert M. White are chairman and vice chairman, respectively, of the National Research Council. This material is based on work supported by the National Science Foundation, the Na- tional Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and the National Aeronautics and Space Ad- ministration under Grant Number ATM-9316824. A limited number of copies of this report are available from Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate, 2101 Constitution Avenue, N.W. Washington, DC 20418 Copyright 1994 by the National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved. Printed in the United States of America Cover: Map of the Tropical Ocean and Global Atmosphere (TOGA) program's Tropical Atmosphere Ocean moored array in the tropical Pacific Ocean. The late Stanley Hayes (see Dedication) led the development and establishment of this array of moorings. Sensors on the moorings measure surface wind, upper ocean currents and thermal structure, and other oceanic and atmospheric variables that are essential in one area of short-term climate prediction- efforts to predict El Niiio/Southern Oscillation events. Map courtesy of the International TOGA Project Office.
PANEL ON NEAR-TERM DEVELOPMENT OF OPERATIONAL OCEAN OBSERVATIONS ROBERT A. KNOX (Chairman), Scripps Institution of Oceanography OTIS B. BROWN, University of Miami ANTONIO J. BUSALACCHI, JR., National Aeronautics and Space Administration RICHARD E. CARBONE, National Center for Atmospheric Research PAUL R. JULIAN, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration MICHAEL J. McPHADEN, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration ROBERT L. MOLINARI, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration PEARN P. NIILER, Scripps Institution of Oceanography VERNER E. SUOMI, University of Wisconsin ROBERT A. WELLER, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution Staff WILLIAM A. SPRIGG, Director DORIS BOUADJEMI, Administrative Assistant TOGA ADVISORY PANEL EDWARDS. SARACHIK (Chairman), University of Washington ANTONIO J. BUSALACCHI, JR., National Aeronautics and Space Administration STEVEN ESBENSEN, Oregon State University DAVID HALPERN, California Institute of Technology DENNIS L. HARTMANN, University of Washington ROBERT A. KNOX, Scripps Institution of Oceanography ANTS LEETMAA, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration ROGER LUKAS, University of Hawaii STEPHEN E. ZEBIAK, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University Staff WILLIAM A. SPRIGG, Director THERESA M. FISHER, Administrative Assistant iii
Gc. ltJo. :h .CJ.f CLIMATE RESEARCH COMMITTEE !19}' ERIC J. BARRON (Chairman), Pennsylvania State University (, I BYRON BOVILLE, National Center for Atmospheric Research KIRK BRYAN, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration GEORGE F. CARRIER, Harvard University ROBERT D. CESS, State University of New York MELINDA M. HALL, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution THOMAS R. KARL, National Climatic Data Center DOUGLAS G. MARTINSON, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University BARRY SALTZMAN, Yale University SOROOSH SOROOSHIAN, University of Arizona RICHARD P. TURCO, University of California, Los Angeles Ex Officio Members JERRY MAHLMAN, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration EDWARD S. SARACHIK, University of Washington Staff WILLIAM A. SPRIGG, Director THERESA M. FISHER, Administrative Assistant iv
BOARD ON ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES AND CLIMATE JOHN A. DUTTON (Chairman), Pennsylvania State University E. ANN BERMAN, International Technology Corporation CRAIG E. DORMAN, Consultant MICHAEL FOX-RABINOVITZ, Goddard Space Flight Center THOMAS E. GRAEDEL, AT&T Bell Laboratories ISAAC M. HELD, Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory WITOLD F. KRAJEWSKI, The University of Iowa MARGARET A. LeMONE, National Center for Atmospheric Research DOUGLAS K. LILLY, University of Oklahoma RICHARDS. LINDZEN, Massachusetts Institute of Technology GERALD R. NORTH, Texas A&M University EUGENE M. RASMUSSON, University of Maryland JOANNE SIMPSON, Goddard Space Flight Center GRAEME L. STEPHENS, Colorado State University Ex Officio Members ERIC J. BARRON, Pennsylvania State University WILLIAM L. CHAMEIDES, Georgia Institute of Technology MARVIN A. GELLER, State University of New York, Stony Brook PETER V. HOBBS, University of Washington Staff WILLIAM A. SPRIGG, Director MARK D. HANDEL, Senior Program Officer DAVID H. SLADE, Senior Program Officer DORIS BOUADJEMI, Administrative Assistant THERESA M. FISHER, Administrative Assistant ELLEN F. RICE, Editor v
COMMISSION ON GEOSCIENCES, ENVIRONMENT, AND RESOURCES M. GORDON WOLMAN (Chairman), The Johns Hopkins University PATRICK R. ATKINS, Aluminum Company of America PETER S. EAGLESON, Massachusetts Institute of Technology EDWARD A. FRIEMAN, Scripps Institution of Oceanography HELEN M. INGRAM, University of Arizona W. BARCLAY KAMB, California Institute of Technology GENE E. LIKENS, The New York Botanical Garden SYUKURO MANABE, NOAA Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory JACK E. OLIVER, Cornell University FRANKL. PARKER, Vanderbilt/Clemson University DUNCAN T. PATTEN, Arizona State University RAYMOND A. PRICE, Queen's University at Kingston MAXINE L. SAVITZ, Garrett Ceramic Components LARRY L. SMARR, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign STEVEN M. STANLEY, The Johns Hopkins University WARREN WASHINGTON, National Center for Atmospheric Research EDITH BROWN WEISS, Georgetown University Law Center IRVIN L. WHITE, Battelle Pacific Northwest Laboratories Staff STEPHEN RATTIEN, Executive Director STEPHEN D. PARKER, Associate Executive Director MORGAN GOPNIK, Assistant Executive Director JEANETTE SPOON, Administrative Officer SANDRA FITZPATRICK, Administrative Associate ROBIN LEWIS ALLEN, Administrative Assistant vi
Dedication The panel dedicates this report, with great respect, to the memory of our late colleague, Stanley P. Hayes, of the National Oceanic and Atmo- spheric Administration's Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory. Until the time of his death, Stan pursued the establishment of the TOGA TAO array with energy, determination, high scientific standards, and reasoned discussion with his peers. In this endeavor he set a fine example to us all and to future generations of scientists who would make fundamental long- term observations of the climate system. vii
Preface The 10-year TOGA (Tropical Ocean and Global Atmosphere) program, a program of the World Climate Research Program, was born on January 1, 1985, with the following objectives: 1. to gain a description of the tropical oceans and the global atmo- sphere as a time-dependent system in order to determine the extent to which this system is predictable on time scales of months to years and to under- stand the processes underlying its predictability, 2. to study the feasibility of modeling the coupled ocean-atmosphere system for the purposes of predicting its variations on time scales of months to years, and 3. to provide the scientific background for designing an observing and data transmission system for operational prediction if this capability is dem- onstrated by coupled ocean-atmosphere models. The TOGA program has been successful in a unique way: it has seen the development of new methods for observing the atmospheric and oceanic aspects of the El Nino/Southern Oscillation and of models for predicting certain of its aspects as much as a year or so in advance. Internationally, the TOGA program has generated an observing system and a large experi- ment, the Coupled Ocean-Atmosphere Response Experiment, which exam- ines the multiple-scale interactions between the atmosphere and ocean in the western Pacific. Within the United States, the TOGA program also ix
X PREFACE began the TOGA Program on Seasonal to Interannual Prediction to develop and refine predictions on seasonal to interannual time scales using the data provided by the TOGA observing system. Now that the TOGA program is rapidly drawing to an end, it is reason- able to ask how its research results can be institutionalized into a regular program of observations and predictions. The Panel on Near-Term Devel- opment of Operational Ocean Observations was charged by the TOGA Ad- visory Panel with the task of making recommendations about the future shape of an ocean-atmosphere observing system. As it turned out, the issues involved were more complex than originally foreseen. The quantities to be measured were not in question: sea-surface temperature, surface winds, and upper-ocean thermal structure are agreed to be the important quantities for initializing the ocean for climate prediction. The TOGA observing system is also recognized to be the best means cur- rently for measuring these quantities in the tropical Pacific. The standard atmospheric observing system was also recognized to be the best available system for initializing models of the atmosphere. But how to go from an array of ocean measurements conceived, funded, and deployed in a research mode to an operational system funded on a regular basis, deployed regularly in a multinational mode, with data available in real time to all was a ques- tion that had never really been posed, much less answered. The members of the panel have done an outstanding job in raising the proper questions, in making recommendations on specific systems when possible, and in admit- ting ignorance when necessary. For their straightforwardness and integrity we owe them all, especially Bob Knox, a vote of thanks. Now that the recommendations have been made, we look forward to a new age of operational oceanography in support of climate predictions. As we move into the post-TOGA age, the triumvirate of operational measure- ments, regular and systematic prediction, and research must continue to advance together. TOGA has made major advances in the way the ocean is understood to interact with the atmosphere, in the methods needed to ob- serve and predict the future evolution of the coupled system, and in the creation of a culture of meteorologists and oceanographers knowledgeable and enthusiastic about each other's field. The report you are about to read is a testament to all these advances, and we owe it to our fields to do our best to act on its recommendations. For the production of this report, we are indebted to the staff of the Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate. EdwardS. Sarachik Chairman, TOGA Advisory Panel