The Emergence of Numerical Weather Prediction: Richardson's Dream
Lewis Fry Richardson dreamt that scientific weather prediction would one day become a practical reality. Before his ideas could bear fruit several advances were needed: better understanding of the dynamics of the atmosphere; stable computational algorithms to integrate the equations; regular observations of the free atmosphere; and powerful automatic computer equipment. By 1950 advances in all these fronts were sufficient to permit the first computer forecast to be made. Over the ensuing fifty years progress in numerical weather prediction has been dramatic. Weather prediction and climate modelling have now reached a high level of sophistication. This book, first published in 2006, tells the story of Richardson's trial forecast, and the fulfilment of his dream of practical numerical weather forecasting. It includes a complete reconstruction of Richardson's forecast, and analyses in detail the causes of his failure. This will appeal to everyone involved in numerical weather forecasting, from researchers and graduate students to professionals.
- Paperback | 292 pages
- 170 x 244 x 15mm | 470g
- 07 Oct 2014
- Cambridge University Press
- Cambridge, United Kingdom
Table of contents
Guiding signs; Preface; Acknowledgements; 1. Weather and prediction by numerical process; 2. The fundamental equations; 3. The oscillations of the atmosphere; 4. The barotropic forecast; 5. The solution algorithm; 6. Observations and inital fields; 7. Richardson's forecast; 8. Balance and initialization; 9. Smoothing the forecast; 10. The ENIAC integrations; 11. Numerical weather prediction today; 12. Fulfilment of the dream; Appendix 1. Table of notation; Appendix 2. Milestones in Richardson's life and career; Appendix 3. Laplace tidal equations: separation of variables; Appendix 4. Richardson's forecast-factory: the $64,000 question; References; Index.
'A wonderful study of the scientific history which also forms a very educational lesson in numerical weather forecasting.' Translated from La Meteorologie 'He's an expert on initialization and has repeated and extended Richardson's original computations, including his barotropic forecast, and those done by von Neumann and Charney on the ENIAC at Aberdeen, Maryland in 1950. ... This well-written history clearly displays the success and practical importance of applied mathematics. Thanks, Peter, for demonstrating that the swinging spring isn't just for fun.' SIAM Review
About Peter Lynch
Peter Lynch is Met Eireann Professor of Meteorology at the University College Dublin and Director of the UCD Meteorology and Climate Centre. Prior to this he was Deputy Director of Met Eireann, the Irish Meteorological Service. He is a Fellow of the Royal Meteorological Society, the Royal Astronomical Society, the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications, and the Institute of Physics.