Real time forecasting of the Bay of Bengal cyclonic storm “RASHMI” of October 2008 – A statistical-dynamical approach
Keywords:Tropical cyclone, Genesis Potential Parameter (GPP), Track prediction, Multi-model ensemble forecast, Intensity Prediction and Decay after Landfall
A four-step statistical-dynamical approach is applied for real time forecasting of the Bay of Bengal cyclonic storm “RASHMI” of October 2008 which made landfall near Khepupara (Bangladesh) around 2200 UTC of 26 October 2008. The four-step approach consists of (a) Analysis of Genesis Potential Parameter (GPP), (b) Track prediction, (c) Intensity Prediction by Statistical Cyclone Intensity Prediction (SCIP) model and (d) Prediction of decaying intensity after the landfall. The results show that the analysis of Genesis Potential Parameter (GPP) at early stages of development strongly indicated that the cyclone “RASHMI” had enough potential to reach its cyclone stage. The 48 hours landfall forecast position error based on 0000 UTC on 25 October shows that the error varies from around 10 km to 95 km and landfall time error varies from 12 hours early to 23 hours delay by different numerical models (NWP). The consensus forecast (ensemble) based on these NWP models shows that landfall forecast position error is around 10 km and landfall time error is around 2 hours delay. The updated 24 hours forecast based on 0000 UTC of 26 October shows improvement in the forecast. The model predicted landfall position error varies from around 10 km to 55 km with landfall time 6 hours early to 3 hours delay. The Multiple Model Ensemble (MME) forecast shows that the landfall forecast position is close to observed landfall point and the landfall time is early by 2 hours. The JMA (Japan Meteorological Agency) and ensemble forecasts are found to be consistent both in terms of 24-hourly forecasts position, landfall point and landfall time. The 12–hourly intensity prediction up to 24 hours forecasts based on 0000 UTC on 26 October show that the model (SCIP) could pick up the intensification of the cyclone. The model forecasts till the landfall point show that there is an underestimation of intensity by 2 knots and 8 knots at 12 hour and 24 hour forecasts respectively. The 6-hourly decaying intensity forecast after the landfall shows an overestimation of 6 knots and 10 knots at 6-hour and 12-hour forecasts respectively. The approach provided useful guidance to the forecasters for real time forecasting of the cyclone.
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