National Oceanic and
Atmospheric Administration
United States Department of Commerce


FY 2022

Workshop report: Tropical Pacific observing needs to advance process understanding and representation in models

DeMott, C.A., A. Subramanian, S. Chen, K. Drushka, Y. Fujii, A.J. Sutton, J. Sprintall, and D. Zhang

Bull. Am. Meteorol. Soc., 103(7), May 24–26, 2021, E1644–E1649, doi: 10.1175/BAMS-D-22-0041.1, View online (external link to publisher) (2022)

Multiscale tropical ocean–atmosphere coupled feedbacks regulate tropical–extratropical interactions and weather across the globe. Sustained in situ and satellite observations of the ocean and lower atmosphere have provided key observations for evaluating cross-scale coupled feedbacks and their representation in climate and forecast models, while high-resolution targeted measurements collected during field campaigns have provided critically needed observations of fundamental oceanic and atmospheric processes that cannot be resolved by climate and forecast models. The 2020 redesign recommendations for the Tropical Pacific Observing System (TPOS; Kessler et al. 2021) motivated the 2019 U.S. CLIVAR Workshop on Atmospheric Convection and Air–Sea Interactions Over the Tropical Oceans (Hagos et al. 2021), where the community gathered to assess the state of knowledge of tropical Pacific ocean–atmosphere feedbacks and to initiate discussions of needed process study observations to fill spatiotemporal gaps in the TPOS. The 2021 U.S. CLIVAR Tropical Pacific Observing Needs to Advance Process Understanding and Representation in Models Workshop (TPON Workshop) furthered this discussion of observing needs. The 3-day TPON Workshop was attended by over 200 observers, modelers, and data assimilation practitioners who outlined needs for both coordinated sustained observations as well as process studies in specific locations.

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