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A technique based solely on QuikSCAT data is developed for determining suspect differences between QSCAT and ECMWF pressure gradients. Pressure fields are computed from scatterometer winds using a variational method that applies a gradient wind conversion. Kinematic analysis of the satellite wind field is performed in order to determine which parameters are physically related to the suspect pressure gradients. It is discovered that the likelihood of these suspect occurrences has the greatest dependence on relative vorticity, total deformation, and the curvature Rossby number. A broad range of these values is tested and a single assessment criterion is derived based upon the value of several skill scores. Overall, the assessment criterion is able to correctly identify the majority of suspect pressure gradients; yet considerable over-flagging does occur in many instances. However, the over-flagging is not random: the false alarms are tightly clustered around the suspect areas, resulting in flagged regions that are too large. Identification of the location of suspect areas in pressure products should be useful to forecasters.
A Thesis Submitted to the Department of Meteorology in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Masters of Science.
Includes bibliographical references.
Florida State University
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