Professor Dale Barker

Dale leads Data Assimilation and Ensembles (DAE) section of Weather Science, which undertakes research and development in observations processing, data assimilation and ensemble forecasting.

Current activities

Dale's activities are split between his management role as Head of DAE and contributions towards a number of ongoing research projects:

Dale is leading the effort to develop a European regional reanalysis within the EU co-funded EURO4M project (2010-2014). The effort will ultimately provide a high-resolution, multi-year synthesis of meteorological observations and NWP model information via state-of-the-art regional 4D-Var data assimilation.

Dale's research interests also include advanced 'hybrid' data assimilation algorithms that make use of short-range ensemble forecasts as proxies for forecast errors within current generation four-dimensional variational (4D-Var) data assimilation systems.

In his management role, Dale oversee the work of DAE's six groups (around 40 staff, managers in brackets): Global DA (Rick Rawlins), UK and Land DA (Bruce Macpherson), Variational DA (Mike Cullen), Ensemble DA (Neill Bowler), Ensemble Forecasting Research (Richard Swinbank) and Advanced Nowcasting Research (Sue Ballard).

Career Background

Dale's meteorological career began in 1993 when he joined the Met Office following a PhD (Sussex) and post doc (Manchester) in astrophysical magnetohydrodynamics. Between 1993 and 1999 Dale worked within the data assimilation team to develop the Met Office's three-dimensional variational (3D-Var) data assimilation scheme. Dale was also responsible for the Met Office's first in-house ensemble prediction system (based on the 'error-breeding' method) for use within hybrid variational/ensemble data assimilation.

In 1999, Dale left the Met Office to join the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in Boulder, Colorado, USA. Whilst at NCAR, Dale led the 'WRF-Var' variational data assimilation effort for the MM5 and WRF community models. In 2006, Dale became an NCAR Program Manager and Director of NCAR's  Data Assimilation Testbed Center.

Dale returned to the Met Office in May 2008, and took over from Andrew Lorenc as Head of DAE in January 2009.

Dale is a member of the WMO/World Weather Research Programme's  Mesoscale Weather Forecasting Research Working Group.

External Recognition

Last updated: 10 April 2014

About Dale Barker

Prof Dale Barker

Dale leads DAE, which undertakes research and development in observations processing, data assimilation and ensemble forecasting.

Areas of expertise

  • Regional Reanalysis
  • Hybrid
    Data Assimilation
  • Modelling of forecast error covariances
  • Community NWP

Dale's publications 

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