Convolutional autoencoders for spatially-informed ensemble post-processing

8 Apr 2022  ·  Sebastian Lerch, Kai L. Polsterer ·

Ensemble weather predictions typically show systematic errors that have to be corrected via post-processing. Even state-of-the-art post-processing methods based on neural networks often solely rely on location-specific predictors that require an interpolation of the physical weather model's spatial forecast fields to the target locations. However, potentially useful predictability information contained in large-scale spatial structures within the input fields is potentially lost in this interpolation step. Therefore, we propose the use of convolutional autoencoders to learn compact representations of spatial input fields which can then be used to augment location-specific information as additional inputs to post-processing models. The benefits of including this spatial information is demonstrated in a case study of 2-m temperature forecasts at surface stations in Germany.

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