The Brazilian developments on the Regional Atmospheric Modeling System (BRAMS 5.2): an integrated environmental model tuned for tropical areas

Geosci Model Dev. 2017 Jan;10(1):189-222. doi: 10.5194/gmd-10-189-2017. Epub 2017 Jan 13.


We present a new version of the Brazilian developments on the Regional Atmospheric Modeling System where different previous versions for weather, chemistry and carbon cycle were unified in a single integrated software system. The new version also has a new set of state-of-the-art physical parameterizations and greater computational parallel and memory usage efficiency. Together with the description of the main features are examples of the quality of the transport scheme for scalars, radiative fluxes on surface and model simulation of rainfall systems over South America in different spatial resolutions using a scale-aware convective parameterization. Besides, the simulation of the diurnal cycle of the convection and carbon dioxide concentration over the Amazon Basin, as well as carbon dioxide fluxes from biogenic processes over a large portion of South America are shown. Atmospheric chemistry examples present model performance in simulating near-surface carbon monoxide and ozone in Amazon Basin and Rio de Janeiro megacity. For tracer transport and dispersion, it is demonstrated the model capabilities to simulate the volcanic ash 3-d redistribution associated with the eruption of a Chilean volcano. Then, the gain of computational efficiency is described with some details. BRAMS has been applied for research and operational forecasting mainly in South America. Model results from the operational weather forecast of BRAMS on 5 km grid spacing in the Center for Weather Forecasting and Climate Studies, INPE/Brazil, since 2013 are used to quantify the model skill of near surface variables and rainfall. The scores show the reliability of BRAMS for the tropical and subtropical areas of South America. Requirements for keeping this modeling system competitive regarding on its functionalities and skills are discussed. At last, we highlight the relevant contribution of this work on the building up of a South American community of model developers.