Research Specialist, Analysis of GPS Water vapour observations


Environmental Protection Agency

Research Specialist, Analysis of GPS Water vapour observations

Hanafin Jennifer

National University of Ireland Galway (NUIG)


SRIA Themes:

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The aim of the project is to provide information about the state of the atmosphere around Ireland for climate monitoring and improved numerical weather prediction (NWP). Retrieving atmospheric water vapour from GPS geodetic reference receivers is a relatively inexpensive way to provide such information in near real-time and a good network of these sensors can provide data over large areas so that both spatial and temporal variability is sampled. This is important for assimilation into NWP models as humidity fields can vary rapidly during frontal passage. Atmospheric humidity is expected to increase with increasing temperature due to global warming which may strengthen the hydrological cycle. The Ordnance Survey Ireland maintain such a network as a reference for roaming GPS devices and these data are being forwarded to the UK Met Office for processing into water vapour as part of the EUMETNET GPS Water Vapour program. The work proposed is to deploy sensors additional to this network that can be used with existing atmospheric measurements to validate the observations to ensure that they are sufficiently accurate for both NWP assimilation and for long term monitoring of the Irish atmosphere. The effect of these new data on the accuracy of NWP forecasts for Ireland will be evaluated at Met Eireann and assessed for possible operational use in the future.

Atmospheric monitoring; Climate; Water vapour; GPS