At the Annual AMS Meeting in Phoenix, Arizona, GMAO staff along with GES DISC staff are giving a one-day short course on Jan. 11 titled "the Modern Era Retrospective-analysis for Research and Applications (MERRA) data and accessibility."
At the Annual Meeting of the American Meteorological Society in Phoenix, Arizona, GMAO staff are presenting a one-day short course entitled “the Modern Era Retrospective-analysis for Research and Applications (MERRA) data and accessibility", on Sunday, January 11, 2009.
Retrospective-analyses (or reanalyses) have been established as an important tool in weather and climate research over the last decade. As computer power increases, the data assimilation and modeling systems improve and become more advanced, the input data quality increases and so reanalyses become more reliable. In 2008, NASA Global Modeling and Assimilation Office began producing a new reanalysis called the Modern Era Retrospective-analysis for Research and Applications (MERRA). The initial data from MERRA has been made available to the community and should be complete through 30 years (1979-present) by fall of 2009.
MERRA has taken advantage of the advancement of computing resources to provide researchers more data than available in previous reanalyses. The native spatial resolution is nominally 2/3x1/2 degrees and the surface two dimensional data are one hourly frequency. In addition to the meteorological analysis data, complete mass, energy and momentum budget data and also stratospheric data are provided. The eventual data holdings will exceed 70 TB. In order to facilitate user accessibility to the data, it will be stored in online hard drives (not tape storage) and available through several portals. Subsetting tools will also be available to allow users to tailor their data requests.
The goals of this short course are to provide hands on users of reanalyses instruction on MERRA systems and also interactive experience with the online data and access tools. The course is intended for students and research scientists who will be actively interested in accessing and applying MERRA data in their weather, climate or applications work.
The course has three parts. There will be an overview of the MERRA system, the validation of the system and the native data format. Second, instructors will provide examples of weather and climate data analysis using various software packages (primarily GrADS) as well as the online access tools for subsetting and download, as well as visualization (e.g. Giovanni). This will also include examples on changing the data format to fit user's preferences and also to regrid the data for comparisons to other reanalyses and observational data. Lastly, there will be time set aside for participants to have hands on access to the data and software while interacting with the instructors and other developers.
The course convener is Michael Bosilovich, NASA/GSFC Global Modeling and Assimilation Office (GMAO). He will be joined by several GMAO, Goddard Earth Science Data and Information Services Center (GES DISC) and Software Integration and Visualization Office (SIVO) staff. A luncheon will be provided during the short course. Computers and wireless network access will also be provided for the hands on session of the course. Both the luncheon and cost for the wireless network will be sponsored by NASA/GSFC.