A global wave parameter database for geophysical applications. Part 3: Improved forcing and spectral resolution

Numerical wave models are used for a wide range of applications, from the global ocean to coastal scales. Here we report on significant improvements compared to the previous hindcast detailed in Part 2 of the present study by Rascle and Ardhuin (2013). This result was obtained by updating forcing fields, adjusting the spectral discretization and retuning wind wave growth and swell dissipation parameters. Most of the model calibration and performance analysis is done using significant wave heights (Hs) from the recent re-calibrated and denoised satellite altimeter data set provided by the European Space Agency Climate Change Initiative (ESA-CCI), with additional verification using spectral buoy data. We find that, for the year 2011, using wind fields from the recent ERA5 reanalysis provides lower scatter against satellite Hs data compared to historical ECMWF operational analyses, but still yields a low bias on wave heights that can be mitigated by re-scaling wind speeds larger than 20 m/s. Alternative blended wind products can provide more accurate forcing in some regions, but were not retained because of larger errors elsewhere. We use the shape of the probability density function of Hs around 2 m to fine tune the swell dissipation parameterization. The updated model hindcast appears to be generally more accurate than the previous version, and can be more accurate than the ERA5 Hs estimates, in particular in strong current regions and for Hs > 7 m.


Wind-generated waves, Wave hindcast, WAVEWATCH III

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Alday Matias, Accensi Mickael, Ardhuin Fabrice, Dodet Guillaume (2021). A global wave parameter database for geophysical applications. Part 3: Improved forcing and spectral resolution. Ocean Modelling. 166. 101848 (19p.). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ocemod.2021.101848, https://archimer.ifremer.fr/doc/00709/82121/

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