Pre-operational short-term forecasts for Mediterranean Sea biogeochemistry
Abstract. Operational prediction of the marine environment is recognised as a fundamental research issue in Europe. We present a pre-operational implementation of a biogeochemical model for the pelagic waters of the Mediterranean Sea, developed within the framework of the MERSEA-IP European project. The OPATM-BFM coupled model is the core of a fully automatic system that delivers weekly analyses and forecast maps for the Mediterranean Sea biogeochemistry. The system has been working in its current configuration since April 2007 with successful execution of the fully automatic operational chain in 87% of the cases while in the remaining cases the runs were successfully accomplished after operator intervention. A description of the system developed and also a comparison of the model results with satellite data are presented, together with a measure of the model skill evaluated by means of seasonal target diagrams. Future studies will address the implementation of a data assimilation scheme for the biogeochemical compartment in order to increase the skill of the model's performance.