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Can reanalyses represent extreme precipitation over England and Wales?

Rhodes, R. I., Shaffrey, L. C. ORCID: and Gray, S. L. ORCID: (2015) Can reanalyses represent extreme precipitation over England and Wales? Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society, 141 (689). pp. 1114-1120. ISSN 1477-870X

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1002/qj.2418


A new generation of reanalysis products is currently being produced that provides global gridded atmospheric data spanning more than a century. Such data may be useful for characterising the observed long-term variability of extreme precipitation events, particularly in regions where spatial coverage of surface observations is limited, and in the pre-satellite era. An analysis of extreme precipitation events is performed over England and Wales, investigating the ability of Twentieth Century Reanalysis and ERA-Interim to represent extreme precipitation accumulations as recorded in the England and Wales Precipitation dataset on accumulation time-scales from 1 to 7 days. Significant correlations are found between daily precipitation accumulation observations and both reanalysis products. A hit-rate analysis indicates that the reanalyses have hit rates (as defined by an event above the 98th percentile) of approximately 40–65% for extreme events in both summer (JJA) and winter (DJF). This suggests that both ERA-Interim and Twentieth Century Reanalysis are difficult to use for representing individual extreme precipitation events over England and Wales.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Science > School of Mathematical, Physical and Computational Sciences > Department of Meteorology
ID Code:37693
Uncontrolled Keywords:extreme rainfall;reanalysis;European precipitation;ERA-Interim;20CR
Publisher:Royal Meteorological Society

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