Pure and Applied Geophysics

, Volume 175, Issue 10, pp 3671–3696 | Cite as

Assessment of Land Surface Models in a High-Resolution Atmospheric Model during Indian Summer Monsoon

  • Raju AttadaEmail author
  • Prashant Kumar
  • Hari Prasad Dasari


Assessment of the land surface models (LSMs) on monsoon studies over the Indian summer monsoon (ISM) region is essential. In this study, we evaluate the skill of LSMs at 10 km spatial resolution in simulating the 2010 monsoon season. The thermal diffusion scheme (TDS), rapid update cycle (RUC), and Noah and Noah with multi-parameterization (Noah-MP) LSMs are chosen based on nature of complexity, that is, from simple slab model to multi-parameterization options coupled with the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model. Model results are compared with the available in situ observations and reanalysis fields. The sensitivity of monsoon elements, surface characteristics, and vertical structures to different LSMs is discussed. Our results reveal that the monsoon features are reproduced by WRF model with all LSMs, but with some regional discrepancies. The model simulations with selected LSMs are able to reproduce the broad rainfall patterns, orography-induced rainfall over the Himalayan region, and dry zone over the southern tip of India. The unrealistic precipitation pattern over the equatorial western Indian Ocean is simulated by WRF–LSM-based experiments. The spatial and temporal distributions of top 2-m soil characteristics (soil temperature and soil moisture) are well represented in RUC and Noah-MP LSM-based experiments during the ISM. Results show that the WRF simulations with RUC, Noah, and Noah-MP LSM-based experiments significantly improved the skill of 2-m temperature and moisture compared to TDS (chosen as a base) LSM-based experiments. Furthermore, the simulations with Noah, RUC, and Noah-MP LSMs exhibit minimum error in thermodynamics fields. In case of surface wind speed, TDS LSM performed better compared to other LSM experiments. A significant improvement is noticeable in simulating rainfall by WRF model with Noah, RUC, and Noah-MP LSMs over TDS LSM. Thus, this study emphasis the importance of choosing/improving LSMs for simulating the ISM phenomena in a regional model.


Indian summer monsoon high-resolution model land surface models error analysis 



Authors are grateful for the contribution of the anonymous reviewers and Editor whose constructive comments and valuable suggestions have substantially improved this article. Authors are thankful to IMD, ECMWF, and TRMM for providing data sets used in this study. The second author is thankful to Space Applications Centre (SAC-ISRO) for logistic support. We also acknowledge Dr. Ravi Kumar Kunchala on the scientific discussions during the manuscript preparation.


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Physical Sciences and Engineering DivisionKing Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST)ThuwalSaudi Arabia
  2. 2.Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences GroupSpace Applications CentreAhmedabadIndia

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