WAP-1D-VAR v1.0: development and evaluation of a one-dimensional variational data assimilation model for the marine ecosystem along the West Antarctic Peninsula
Kim, Hyewon Heather
Ducklow, Hugh W.
Schofield, Oscar M. E.
Steinberg, Deborah K.
Doney, Scott C.
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The West Antarctic Peninsula (WAP) is a rapidly warming region, with substantial ecological and biogeochemical responses to the observed change and variability for the past decades, revealed by multi-decadal observations from the Palmer Antarctica Long-Term Ecological Research (LTER) program. The wealth of these long-term observations provides an important resource for ecosystem modeling, but there has been a lack of focus on the development of numerical models that simulate time-evolving plankton dynamics over the austral growth season along the coastal WAP. Here, we introduce a one-dimensional variational data assimilation planktonic ecosystem model (i.e., the WAP-1D-VAR v1.0 model) equipped with a model parameter optimization scheme. We first demonstrate the modified and newly added model schemes to the pre-existing food web and biogeochemical components of the other ecosystem models that WAP-1D-VAR model was adapted from, including diagnostic sea-ice forcing and trophic interactions specific to the WAP region. We then present the results from model experiments where we assimilate 11 different data types from an example Palmer LTER growth season (October 2002–March 2003) directly related to corresponding model state variables and flows between these variables. The iterative data assimilation procedure reduces the misfits between observations and model results by 58 %, compared to before optimization, via an optimized set of 12 parameters out of a total of 72 free parameters. The optimized model results capture key WAP ecological features, such as blooms during seasonal sea-ice retreat, the lack of macronutrient limitation, and modeled variables and flows comparable to other studies in the WAP region, as well as several important ecosystem metrics. One exception is that the model slightly underestimates particle export flux, for which we discuss potential underlying reasons. The data assimilation scheme of the WAP-1D-VAR model enables the available observational data to constrain previously poorly understood processes, including the partitioning of primary production by different phytoplankton groups, the optimal chlorophyll-to-carbon ratio of the WAP phytoplankton community, and the partitioning of dissolved organic carbon pools with different lability. The WAP-1D-VAR model can be successfully employed to link the snapshots collected by the available data sets together to explain and understand the observed dynamics along the coastal WAP.
© The Author(s), 2021. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License. The definitive version was published in Kim, H. H., Luo, Y.-W., Ducklow, H. W., Schofield, O. M., Steinberg, D. K., & Doney, S. C. WAP-1D-VAR v1.0: development and evaluation of a one-dimensional variational data assimilation model for the marine ecosystem along the West Antarctic Peninsula. Geoscientific Model Development, 14(8), (2021): 4939–4975, https://doi.org/10.5194/gmd-14-4939-2021.
Suggested CitationKim, H. H., Luo, Y.-W., Ducklow, H. W., Schofield, O. M., Steinberg, D. K., & Doney, S. C. (2021). WAP-1D-VAR v1.0: development and evaluation of a one-dimensional variational data assimilation model for the marine ecosystem along the West Antarctic Peninsula. Geoscientific Model Development, 14(8), 4939–4975.
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