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We are working on the new model upgrade (IFS cycle 47r2), expected to be the last cycle before ECMWF's computing centre is moving to Bologna. The upgrade includes single-precision for ENS (forecast up to day 46 and hindcast) and HRES (forecast) model. Moreover, the number of ENS model levels will be increased to 137 (currently 91) to bring ENS in line with the vertical resolution of HRES. A summary of the meteorological performance will be made available in November. We have scheduled webinars to introduce the cycle, two in December and one just before the implementation, planned for May 2021.

More details are available at Implementation of IFS Cycle 47r2.

Back in June ECMWF implemented a substantial upgrade of its Integrated Forecasting System (IFS). IFS Cycle 47r1 included changes in the forecast model and in the data assimilation system. The upgrade has had a small positive impact on forecast skill in medium-range and extended-range forecasts in the troposphere and a large positive impact on analyses and forecasts in the stratosphere. 

We are pleased to announce that the full IFS Cycle 47r1 documentation  is now available.

Following ECMWF Council decision in June 2020, we are pleased to announce the availability of Tropical Cyclone trajectories for the 06/18 UTC forecast cycles in test mode. For further details see   Tropical Cyclone tracks from the 06/18 UTC forecast cycles : Test Products

Moreover, WMO essential products (publicly available) and additional products (available to NMHS of WMO countries) from the 06/18 UTC forecast cycles are available. Please check the products description and download instructions.  

Also, four new parameters, previously available via the ACMAD data feed, will now be available as WMO additional products:

Short Name

Long Name

TCWV

Total column water vapour

SP

Surface pressure

STL1

Soil temperature level 1

SKT

Skin temperature

Please note that the ACMAD data feed will be discontinued from the DCPC interface on the 6th October 2020 (12UTC run)

Implementation of IFS cycle 47r1 is now successfully completed. The first forecast of the new cycle was the 06UTC on 30th June 2020. A description of the new IFS cycle, key improvements and new products are available on our website ‘IFS upgrade greatly improves forecasts in the stratosphere

We would like to take this opportunity to make you aware of our future plans for the next model upgrade which will see the introduction of single precision forecasts. More information about single precision is available in the following article ‘Progress in using single precision in the IFS’ . At this stage we are not in a position to give a firm date, but we are working towards implementation in Q1 2021.


Stay tuned!

On 18 June Tim Hewson gave a webinar related to point rainfall. This included many examples of how the (experimental) point rainfall products, which went live in ecCharts in April 2019, can be used by forecasters to improve their forecasts. A recording is now available online:

http://tiny.cc/ecPoint-seminar

The talk abstract can be accessed here: https://www.ecmwf.int/en/learning/seminars

More guidance for forecasters is available in the Forecast User Guide: Point Rainfall

New Cumulative Distribution Functions (CDFs) for the extended-range forecasts are available on ecCharts.

They display 7-day anomalies for 2-metre temperature and total precipitation for each location across the Globe. Each CDF plot displays the latest forecast along with the corresponding Extended Range Model climate (ERM-climate), and the previous extended range ensemble forecasts valid for the same 7-day period. This product is updated twice a week, every Monday and Thursday with the new runs of the extended-range forecast.

Details about all available forecast steps and the plot design can be found in the Forecast User Guide: Extended Range CDFs

As we are getting closer to run the 47r1 test system in near real-time, additional information on the new model is available at Implementation of IFS Cycle 47r1

The HRES and ENS performance can now be assessed through interactive scorecards. Moreover, we have added information on the new parameters and on the improvements to the Convective INhibition (CIN), providing better guidance for initiation of convection/thunderstorm activity, and on the revised formulation of the Extreme Forecast Index (EFI) for CAPE (Convective Available Potential Energy).

The recommended software versions to handle the data are also available. 

Please add to your calendar the date for the webinar by Director of Forecasts Florian Pappenberger on the model assessment, new and improved parameters products and the access to test data for the new cycle:  

The new model cycle brings improvements throughout the troposphere in the order of 0.5% in extra-tropical upper-air forecasts. The improvements are most apparent in the ENS scores, both against own analysis and against observations. More details on its performance are available at Implementation of IFS Cycle 47r1.

Do not forget to add to our your calendar one of the two first webinars when Director of Research Andy Brown will explain the model changes and how they will improve forecasts:

Further webinars are planned for 27 May at 8:30 UTC and 28 May at 14:30 UTC with a focus on verification, technical access to the test data, and new parameters and products. Details on how to join will be provided closer to the events.

The new IFS Cycle 47r1 will be implemented on 30 June 2020.  

This cycle includes changes in the treatment of observations, improvements in the data assimilation and to the model. Quintic vertical interpolation in the semi-Lagrangian advection scheme has been introduced as well as the inclusion of a better surface albedo climatology making use of more data from the MODIS instrument. Further information on this new cycle is available at Implementation of IFS Cycle 47r1 

Please note that new metrics of Tropical Cyclone (TC) size will be made available to supplement the existing forecasts of TC track and intensity. We encourage users of these BUFR data to test their decoding software. For technical information see New Tropical Cyclone Wind Radii product.   

Two webinars to introduce the model cycle have been organised: 

Two additional webinars will take place at the end of May.  

We are working on the new model upgrade (Cy47r1). A low-risk approach has been taken when putting together the cycle, therefore the impact to users is not expected to be large. Some science testing is still underway and, once this is complete, there will be a few months of further testing in a pre-operational phase. The new model upgrade should be put into operation in summer 2020, before the migration of the operational activities to Bologna. 

The main scientific contributions to Cy47r1 are expected to be: 

  • A new formulation of weak-constraint 4D-Var 
  • Quintic vertical interpolation in the semi-Lagrangian update (which together with the above gives improvements in the stratosphere) 
  • MODIS land surface albedo changes which are beneficial for the for 2m temperature forecasts 
  • Shorter, 450-second time-step in last minimisation to ensure consistency with the outer loop time-step, thus removing spurious gravity waves and improving scores 
  • The ‘first guess’ from the most recent early delivery run in the long-window data assimilation (LWDA) analysis is used to further improve the continuous data assimilation introduced in Cy46r1 
  • Changes to high wind drag over the ocean to address a long-standing problem with the wind-pressure relationship in tropical cyclones. 

In spring 2020 we will run a couple of webinars to detail the benefits of the new cycle

Dear Colleague,

As part of its efforts to produce the best possible analysis, ECMWF continuously reacts to changes in the observing system. Actions are taken to blacklist suspected observations and to allow the use of trusted and tested datasets. Records are kept for of all the events that affected the observing system used at ECMWF. Such information might be of interest to ECMWF's forecast users and to the wide NWP community. The list of the main data events is now made available to ECMWF forecast users at:

https://confluence.ecmwf.int/display/FCST/Observations+data+events

The list is updated manually on a regular and best effort basis.

If you have any questions about this new resource information, please do not hesitate to contact servicedesk@ecmwf.int

Best regards

Prof. Florian Pappenberger
Director of Forecasts

ecCharts-2 now in production

ecCharts-2 is now in production. ecCharts URL (https://www.ecmwf.int/en/forecasts/eccharts) and Dashboard URL ( https://www.ecmwf.int/en/forecasts/dashboard) point to the new system.

The previous ecCharts service will be available until the beginning of June 2020 at the URL  https://www.ecmwf.int/en/forecasts/eccharts-1 . 

Please update any ecCharts-2 bookmarks before the middle of June 2020, as redirection of ecCharts-2 to ecCharts will not be active after that.

Details for ecCharts November 2019 updates (including sharing in ecCharts and new layers), are available at the link below;
https://confluence.ecmwf.int/display/ECCHARTS/ecCharts+updates+-+November+2019

If you would like to report any issues or provide feedback, please contact developers at 
eccharts-2@ecmwf.int.

Dear Colleagues,

Please note that the HRES Stand Alone Wave model (HRES-SAW : [https://www.ecmwf.int/en/forecasts/datasets/set-ii]) will be discontinued  on 7 January 2020 after the  00 UTC run, as previously announced.

From this date onwards, you will need to acquire the equivalent products from the fully-coupled HRES WAve Model (HRES-WAM) product set. You can find additional information on how to change dissemination or your MARS retrievals at the following link:

​How to access HRES-WAM (WAve Model) test data


ECMWF has implemented several changes which will improve access to its products by the WMO National Meteorological and Hydrological Services. All the static web charts and the ENSgrams on the ECMWF website are now available free of charge to all WMO Members. Additionally, the cost of the web products licence has also been reduced, and a new data licence with a lower fee has been introduced.

We would like to take this opportunity to present these changes and more on the products and licenses currently available to WMO National Meteorological and Hydrological Services in a short webinar, conducted in English. As we understand our audience may come from all over the world, this webinar will be held on Tuesday 5 November at two different times:

  • Tuesday 5 November 9:00 UTC
  • Tuesday 5 November 16:00 UTC

You may distribute this invitation to whoever you think could be interested. The webinar will be broadcast in Bluejeans, a videoconferencing system that does not require any installation of extra software to join. We recommend connecting at least 15 minutes before the start, using the following link:

https://bluejeans.com/474868131

ECMWF is pleased to announce that new, experimental "Point Rainfall" products are being introduced onto the ecCharts platform on Wednesday 17 April.

There is a new section in the Forecast User Guide to describe the products and how to use them (here).