In most cases the performance evaluation will be completed on the raw meteorological

fields. However it is also important to compare the results before and after the meteorological

post-processing to ensure that the meteorological fields going into the air quality model have not

been adversely affected.

Phenomenological Evaluation: As discussed in Chapter 11, it is recommended that a

conceptual description of the area's air quality problem be developed prior to the initiation of any

air modeling study. Within the conceptual description of a particular modeling exercise, it is

recommended that the specific meteorological parameters106 that influence air quality be

identified and qualitatively ranked in importance. When evaluating meteorological models or

any other source of meteorological data, the focus of the phenomenological evaluation should be

on those specific meteorological phenomena that are thought to strongly affect air pollution

formation and transport within the scope of a specific analysis. It is expected that this

event-oriented evaluation will need to summarize model performance in terms of statistical

metrics such as probability of detection and false alarm rate. As an example of a potential

phenomenological analysis, many regional air quality modeling exercises attempt to assess the

effects of transport of emissions from one area to a downwind area with an intent to establish

source-receptor relationships. For these types of modeling analyses, accurate transport wind

trajectories are needed to properly establish these source-receptor linkages. In this type of model

application, a useful event-based meteorological evaluation would be to compare model-derived

trajectories versus those based on ambient data to determine what error distance can be

associated with the model fields.


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