Major Upgrades for GEOS FP System on 01.24.2017


Some major upgrades are imminent for the GMAO's GEOS Forward-Processing (GEOS FP) system : we intend to put them into production on January 24, 2017.

In the short term, these upgrades will not include many changes to the output data streams that we provide. The data collections and associated file naming conventions, as well as the spatial resolution of these products, will remain the same except for the addition of a few extra variables in some collections.

In the longer term we will be updating several aspects of the output streams. This will include a change in the naming convention for many of the files. While we will continue to provide much of the GEOS data on a latitude-longitude grid, some of the specialized datasets that are saved on the model's vertical grid will in future be provided on the cubed sphere grid: this leads to a reduction in data volumes and also increases the accuracy of these products, since they will no longer be spatially interpolated. More information on these changes will be provided in the coming months.

The upgrades to GEOS FP are numerous. Above all, this includes a transition from a three-dimensional to a four-dimensional assimilation system and a two-fold (linear) increase in spatial resolution to a 12.5-km (around one-eighth-of-one-degree) grid. There are numerous changes to the assimilation algorithms, the details of the data assimilation, and the representation of processes in the GEOS model. These changes lead to many more realistic features in the assimilated fields (such as cloud properties and distributions) and the quality of the medium-range forecasts.

Technical documentation of these changes and their impacts on the system is in progress and will be released as soon as possible.

In the coming days an updated version of the GEOS FP file specification will be posted at the following location, documenting the extra variables that have been added:

Because the changes are exclusively additions to existing products and the filenames are not changing, there should be no software changes required for data users.

Please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions or concerns that you may have regarding these forthcoming changes.

Gi-Kong Kim
Rob Lucchesi
Steven Pawson

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