Robust Spatial Projections of Real World, a NERC funded large grant looking at the impacts of climate change and assessment of their robustness. My work will be focussed on European extra-tropical cyclones and how they may change in a warmer climate.
Windstorm Precipitation Risk, a project working with Swiss Re-insurance looking at the risk of extreme precipitation associated with European windstorms.
WISC - Wind Storm Climate Service, funded through the Copernicus Climate Service, producing a new windstorms catalogue, including validation and loss-maps for the (re)insurance sector. My work included the production of the storm tracks as well as meeting with the insurance sector to understand their needs.
SINATRA - Susceptibility of catchments to INTense RAinfall and flooding, funded through the NERC Flooding From Intense Rainfall programme (FFIR); a member of the Water@Reading group. My work is looking at determining what the atmospheric precursors are for summer flash flooding events, initially looking at the role Atmospheric Rivers (ARs) may have on these events, however also looking at atmospheric moisture transport outside the AR definition.
DEMON - Developing Enhanced impact MOdels for integration with Next generation NWP and climate outputs, funded via the NERC Storm Risk Mitigation programme (SRM). My research looked at how extreme precipitation events will change in a warming climate and the uncertainties associated with the projections, and to produce data for use in hydrological models for use by other members of the project. The project aims were to improve urban flood inundation modelling in a warmer climate.
XWS - eXtreme WindStorms database, a collaborative project between the University of Reading (NCAS), University of Exeter, the Met Office, Willis Re for use in academic research as well as other reinsurance companies (XWS). My research produced cyclone tracks for the biggest insurance loss producing events, whilst investigating how these relate to "meteorologically interesting" events, to determine whether there is a simple metric that correlates the two sets of events.
I completed my PhD at the Environmental Systems Science Centre (ESSC), University of Reading, supervised by Kevin Hodges:
Extra-tropical cyclones have caused widespread disruption to the UK and Western Europe in recent years, with numerous examples of the precipitation associated with these events leading to pluvial and fluvial flooding. The prediction of these events, and any possible changes to their intensity and/or frequency, is extremely important to those who may be affected by such events. To accurately predict the location, and to gain realistic intensities, very high resolution models are required.
This study has looked at how to gain high spatial and temporal information on precipitation associated with extra-tropical cyclones, to be potentially used in hydrology models, so the effect of a warmer climate on events that may be flood producing can be investigated. The use of a Limited Area Model (LAM) to dynamically downscale precipitation associated with extra-tropical cyclones, identified in a high resolution Global Climate Model (GCM), is assessed with the aim of gaining more realistic extreme precipitation associated with the cyclones. The effect of a warmer climate, and the impact of an increase in horizontal resolution, on the GCM precipitation from extra-tropical cyclones is also investigated.
The results from the GCM study show an increase in the intensity and frequency of extreme precipitation events associated with extra-tropical cyclones, due both to a warming climate and also due to an increase in horizontal resolution of the GCM, highlighting the need to downscale this information. The LAM evaluation shows that the model is capable of producing realistic precipitation estimates of intense precipitation events, under certain simulation criteria. The downscaling assessment highlighted some issues with the selection criteria but showed that it was a suitable method for downscaling precipitation from extra-tropical cyclones to obtain more realistic precipitation intensities that can be used as the inputs to hydrological models.
A full copy of my thesis, and my published papers can be found here.