Drought sensitivity to land surface conditions
November 2020: Dr. Chul-Su Shin, Prof. Bohua Huang and Prof. Paul Dirmeyer are investigating the role of land surface states in drought. Recent work has been featured by NOAA/NIDIS, showing the potential for improved land surface initialization to improve drought forecasts.
That work led to a new project to investigate the interplay between remote sea surface temperature anomalies and near-field soil moisture extremes in the initiation, maintenance and termination of drought over the continental U.S. This new project will apply techniques from Information Theory to drought research, and have a focus on the development and performance of the new Unified Forecast System (UFS), under development by a consortium of universities (including GMU), NCAR and the National Weather Service. The project aims to ensure the weather forecast system will have improved capability to predict drought and other phenomena that are modulated by land-atmosphere interactions.