Would be the Atmosphere Chaotic?

Isimar de Azevedo Santos, Julio Buchmann

Abstract


The atmosphere has often been considered “chaotic” when in fact the “chaos” is a manifestation of the models that simulate it, which do not include all the physical mechanisms that exist within it. A weather prediction cannot be perfectly verified after a few days of integration due to the inherent nonlinearity of the equations of the hydrodynamic models. The innovative ideas of Lorenz led to the use of the ensemble forecast, with clear improvements in the quality of the numerical weather prediction. The present study addresses the statement that “even with perfect models and perfect observations, the ‘chaotic' nature of the atmosphere would impose a finite limit of about two weeks to the predictability of the weather” as the atmosphere is not necessarily “chaotic”, but the models used in the simulation of atmospheric processes are. We conclude, therefore, that potential exists for developments to increase the horizon of numerical weather prediction, starting with better models and observations.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.11137/2013_2_40_44

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