08 Apr 2022
08 Apr 2022

Moana Ocean Hindcast – a 25+ years simulation for New Zealand Waters using the ROMS v3.9 model

Joao Marcos Azevedo Correia de Souza1, Sutara H. Suanda2,3, Phellipe P. Couto1,3, Robert O. Smith3, Colette Kerry4, and Moninya Roughan4 Joao Marcos Azevedo Correia de Souza et al.
  • 1MetOcean Solutions, a division of Meteorological Service of New Zealand, Raglan 3225, New Zealand
  • 2Department of Physics and Physical Oceanography, University of North Carolina Wilmington, USA
  • 3Department of Marine Science, University of Otago, Otago 9016, New Zealand
  • 4School of Biological Earth and Environmental Sciences, UNSW Sydney, NSW 2052, Australia

Abstract. Here we present the first open access long term 3D hydrodynamic ocean hindcast for the New Zealand ocean estate. The 28 years 5 km x 5 km resolution free running ocean model configuration was developed under the umbrella of the Moana Project, using the Regional Ocean Model System (ROMS) version 3.9. It includes an improved bathymetry, spectral tidal forcing at the boundaries, and inverse barometer effect usually absent from global simulations. The continuous integration provides a framework to improve our understanding of the ocean dynamics and connectivity, as well as identify long-term trends and drivers for particular processes. The simulation was compared to a series of satellite and in-situ observations, including sea surface temperature (SST), sea surface height (SSH), coastal water level and temperature stations, moored temperature time series, and temperature and salinity profiles from the CORA5.2 dataset – including Argo floats, XBT and CTD stations. These comparisons show the model simulation is consistent and represents important ocean processes at different temporal and spatial scales, from local to regional and from a few hours to years including extreme events. The root-mean-squared errors are 0.11m for SSH, 0.23 °C for SST, and < 1 °C and 0.15 g/kg for temperature and salinity profiles. Coastal tides are simulated well, and both high skill and correlation are found between modelled and observed sub-tidal sea level and water temperature stations. Moreover, cross-sections of the main currents around New Zealand show the simulation is consistent with transport, velocity structure, and variability reported in the available literature. This first multi-decadal, high resolution, open access hydrodynamic model represents a significant step forward for ocean sciences in the New Zealand region.

Joao Marcos Azevedo Correia de Souza et al.

Status: final response (author comments only)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • CEC1: 'Comment on egusphere-2022-41', Juan Antonio Añel, 25 Apr 2022
    • AC1: 'Reply on CEC1', Joao Souza, 26 Apr 2022
  • RC1: 'Comment on egusphere-2022-41', Anonymous Referee #1, 14 Jun 2022
    • AC2: 'Reply on RC1', Joao Souza, 21 Aug 2022
  • RC2: 'Comment on egusphere-2022-41', Anonymous Referee #2, 02 Aug 2022
    • AC3: 'Reply on RC2', Joao Souza, 21 Aug 2022

Joao Marcos Azevedo Correia de Souza et al.

Joao Marcos Azevedo Correia de Souza et al.


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Short summary
The current manuscript describes the configuration and evaluation of the Moana Ocean Hindcast, a 25+ years simulation of the ocean state around New Zealand using the "Regional Ocean Model System" v3.9. This is the first open-access, long term, continuous, realistic ocean simulation for this region and provides information for the improvement in the understanding of the ocean processes that affect the New Zealand Economic Exclusive Zone.