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Dr Aurore Porson

Aurore works on boundary layer processes.

Aurore works on boundary layer processes, with a particular interest in fog formation and fog predictability.

Current activities

Aurore is a scientist working on the predictability of fog forecasting. The current focus of Aurore's work is on analysing and improving the performance of the Met Office Numerical Weather Prediction models in difficult forecast conditions such as fog. Onset, spatial distribution (vertically, horizontally and terrain-related), optical thickness and dissipation are all properties of the fog that play a major role on the accuracy of the forecasts. These properties are linked to the land-surface scheme, the microphysics and to the boundary layer heat, momentum and moisture transfer. The fog forecasts in the Unified Model also benefit from an aerosol distribution model. Getting the fog right requires a perfect parameterization and balance of all these components. Research (validation and development) is continually needed to assess and improve our models in these difficult forecast conditions. Aurore runs high-resolution ensemble forecasts of the Unified Model from 2.2 km down to 100 m to examine the predictability of the fog forecasts across the different resolutions and assess the guidance provided by the ensemble as a whole.

Aurore has been involved in different validation exercises of the Unified Model against fog observations carried out at the Cardington Meteorological Research Unit and is now focusing on the LANFEX research project. 

Career background

Aurore has been a member of Atmospheric Processes and Parametrizations since joining the Met Office in 2008. Before joining the Met Office, Aurore completed a PhD in atmospheric physics at the catholic University of Louvain, within the Institut d'astronomie et de geophysique Georges Lemaitre in Louvain-la-Neuve (Belgium), where she also received her undergraduate and Master degrees. During her PhD she received Belgian government funding to spend over six months working at the Department of Earth and Ocean Sciences, at the University of British Columbia, developing high-resolution numerical simulations of sea-breeze scaling. She then did a three-year post-doc at the Department of Meteorology at theUniversity of Reading Department of Meteorology working on urban parameterization. Aurore now works for the mesoscale modelling group at MetOffice@Reading, at the Department of Meteorology, University of Reading.

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