NOUS41 KWBC 291417, AAA



Technical Implementation Notice 14-16, Amended

National Weather Service Headquarters Washington DC

1020 AM EDT Tue Apr 29 2014


To:      Subscribers:

         -Family of Services

         -NOAA Weather Wire Service

         -Emergency Managers Weather Information Network


         Other NWS Partners, Users and Employees


From:    Timothy McClung

         Science Plans Branch Chief

         Office of Science and Technology


Subject: Amended: Upgrade to HIRES Window:

         Effective June 3, 2014


Notice is amended to reschedule the upgrade from May 28 to June

3, 2014, and to deleted mention of an upgrade to the Ferrier

microphysics that will not in fact be done with this upgrade.


Effective Tuesday, June 3, 2014, beginning with the 1200

Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) run, the National Centers for

Environmental Prediction (NCEP) will upgrade the High-Resolution

Window Forecast System (HIRESW). The upgrade includes:


-Changes to the model components

-Increases in horizontal and vertical resolution

-Changes in parameterized physics

-Merging of West and East domains into a single CONUS domain

-Additional runs for Alaska and western CONUS

-Additional gridded output on NDFD 2.5 to 3.0 km grids

-New product fields


Model Changes:


The HIRESW model will be updated from Weather Research and

Forecasting (WRF) version 3.2 code to WRF Version 3.5 code for

the Advanced Research WRF (ARW) member.  The WRF Nonhydrostatic

Mesoscale Model (NMM) member will be replaced by the

Nonhydrostatic Multiscale Model on B-grid (NMMB). 


Domain and Schedule Changes:


The model will discontinue the West and East domains and

replaced by a single CONUS domain. As a result, the run schedule

of the domains will be revised as follows:


00 UTC: CONUS, Hawaii, Guam

06 UTC: Alaska, Puerto Rico

12 UTC: CONUS, Hawaii, Guam

18 UTC: Alaska, Puerto Rico


This change provides Alaska and the western portion of CONUS

with twice daily runs whereas, instead of one HIRESW run per



Resolution Changes:


The WRF-ARW model horizontal resolution will increase from 

5.15 km to:


    CONUS: 4.2 km

    Alaska: 3.5 km

    Hawaii, Guam, and Puerto Rico: 3.8 km


The WRF-NMM model horizontal resolution of 4.0 km will increase

in the NMMB model to:


    CONUS: 3.6 km

    Alaska: 3.0 km

    Hawaii, Guam, and Puerto Rico: 3.0 km


The number of vertical levels will increase from 35 to 40 in

both the new WRF-ARW and NMMB systems.


Physics Changes:


- WRF-ARW will change from use of WRF Single Moment 3-Class

(WSM3) microphysics to WRF Single Moment 6-Class (WSM6)


- Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL) radiation used

with WRF-NMM will be replaced by the Rapid Radiative Transfer

Model (RRTM) for NMMB

-NMMB model run will use Betts-Miller-Janjic (BMJ) parameterized

convection for the Guam and Puerto Rico domains only.


Initialization Changes:


- The new CONUS domain interpolates an initial condition from

the Rapid Refresh (RAP) model, with boundary conditions

generated from the Global Forecast System (GFS) model.  The

current West and East domains are initialized using North

American Mesoscale (NAM) model conditions for initial and

lateral boundary conditions.

- The Puerto Rico and Hawaii domains will switch from using NAM

model conditions for initial and lateral boundaries to GFS

conditions for both. The Guam and Alaska domains retain their

use of GFS conditions.

- All NMMB runs, except for the Guam domain, replace their

initial surface/soil fields with land states from the NAM.


Output Product Changes:


The current HIRESW produces output on 5 km grids for East CONUS,

west CONUS, Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico and Guam.  These

products will continue, although the East and West grids will

only be distributed on NOAAPORT. The grid will no longer be

available on the NCEP or NWS ftp servers. 


The filenames of the existing 5 km output files will be

changing.  The ".tm00" appendix is dropped and an "f" is added

before the forecast hour:


akarw.t18z.awpreg24.tm00.grib2 -> akarw.t18z.awpregf24.grib2


The model descriptor "nmm" is replaced with "nmmb":


hinmm.t12z.awpreg24.tm00.grib2 -> hinmmb.t12z.awpregf24.grib2


All domains will gain new grids of select surface fields

interpolated to the higher-resolution NDFD grids (3 km for

Alaska, 2.5 km for CONUS, HI, PR and Guam). Output on NDFD grids

will include directly interpolated information, and information

that has been processed through smartinit downscaling.  Output

files will have names in this format:





Three new gridded output fields will become available on all

output grids, both 5km grids and NDFD grids:


  -Vertically Integrated Liquid (VIL)

  -Haines Index

  -Surface Wind Gust


Supplementing the fine-scale NDFD grids, new output files for

the CONUS will provide full-domain coverage in horizontal and

vertical (see list of isobaric levels below) on the 5 km grid

227 with a filename of the form:




Additional isobaric level output will be generated for the 5 km

non-NDFD output grids for all domains:


Geopotential height, temperature, relative humidity, dew point

temperature, and u- and v-wind components will be added at 350,

450, 525, 550, 575, 600, 625, 650, 675, 725, 750, 775, 800, 825,

875, 900, 950, and 975 hPa.


Vertical velocity will be added at 350, 450, 525, 550, 575, 625,

650, 675, 725, 750, 775, 800, 825, 875, 900, 950, and 975 hPa.


New cloud field output will be generated for the 5km non-NDFD

output grids for all domains.


-Low, middle, and high cloud fractions

-Total column cloud condensate

-Total column cloud water

-Total column cloud ice

-Total column cloud rain

-Total column cloud snow


Changes to BUFR products:


The list of stations for which BUFR output is produced will be

changed with this upgrade. The changes are outlined at:



Data Availability and Schedule Changes:


As a result of the schedule changes mentioned above, areas

covered by the current West domain output grid will get that

output for the 00 UTC and 12 UTC cycles rather than the current

06 UTC cycle.  Alaskan domain output will become available for

the 06 UTC cycle to supplement the current 18 UTC cycle.  On

NOAAPORT, the delivery schedule will be as follows, with the

East/West grids provided in lieu of the new full CONUS grid:


00 UTC: East CONUS, West CONUS, Hawaii, Guam

06 UTC: Alaska, Puerto Rico

12 UTC: East CONUS, West CONUS, Hawaii, Guam

18 UTC: Alaska, Puerto Rico


During the 2014 hurricane season, NCEP is not planning to

reinstate the preemption of HIRESW runs, but in subsequent years

NCEP may need to resume preemption based on resources in the

NCEP Production Suite.


The HIRESW data is currently available on the NWS FTP server,

the NCEP server, NOMADS and on NOAAPORT. 


Product delivery timing of the current HIRESW GRIB2 products on

the ftp servers and NOMADS is not expected to change as a result

of this implementation. New downscaled output from CONUS and AK

domains will be available as much as 30 minutes later than other

gridded output. For the products available on NOAAPORT, the

HIRESW output will now be disseminated as the model is running,

rather than all at once at the end of the model run as it is

today. The last forecast hours will still arrive at the same

time, but the earlier forecast hours will come out earlier than

today, and come out gradually as the model runs.


More information regarding the current operational HIRESW and

associated products can be found at:


A consistent parallel feed of data will become available on the

NCEP server once the model is running in parallel on the NCEP

Weather and Climate Operational Supercomputing System (WCOSS) by

early-April.  The parallel data will be available via the

following URLs:


NCEP encourages all users to ensure their decoders are flexible

and are able to adequately handle changes in content order,

changes in the scaling factor component within the product

definition section (PDS) of the GRIB files, and also any volume

changes which may be forthcoming. These elements may change with

future NCEP model implementations. NCEP will make every attempt

to alert users to these changes prior to any implementations.


For questions regarding these changes, please contact:


   Matthew Pyle

   NCEP/EMC, Mesoscale Modeling Branch

   College Park, Maryland

   Phone: 301-683-3687



   Geoff DiMego

   NCEP/EMC, Mesoscale Modeling Branch

   College Park, Maryland

   Phone: 301-683-3764



For questions regarding the dataflow aspects of these data sets,

please contact:


   Rebecca Cosgrove

   NCEP/NCO Dataflow Team

   College Park, Maryland

   Phone:  301-683-0567



NWS National Technical Implementation Notices are online at: