Quality of the ERA5 and CFSR winds and their contribution to wave modelling performance in a semi-closed sea

Calisir E., Soran M. B., AKPINAR A.

JOURNAL OF OPERATIONAL OCEANOGRAPHY, vol.16, no.2, pp.106-130, 2023 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 16 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/1755876x.2021.1911126
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Aquatic Science & Fisheries Abstracts (ASFA), Environment Index, INSPEC
  • Page Numbers: pp.106-130
  • Bursa Uludag University Affiliated: Yes


This study aims to investigate the quality of ERA5, a recent reanalysis wind product, and its contribution to wave modelling performance in a semi-closed sea, the Black Sea. This investigation includes a comparison of ERA5 surface wind fields with the ones from the CFSR to assess if this latest reanalysis improved the representation of the surface winds. Wind speeds from both reanalyses were validated with measurements at Gloria, the only sea wind measurement station on the Black Sea. Validations were also conducted using altimeter and scatterometer satellite data after which results were later compared against each other. The second aim of this study investigates whether a wave hindcast model forced with the ERA5 wind fields has improved prediction of wave parameters. A SWAN model with default settings was used to compare the results under the same conditions. Performance analyzes of the default SWAN wave estimates with both ERA5 and CFSR winds were conducted using three offshore buoy measurements and altimeter data of satellites over the Black Sea. Results show that ERA5 winds are more biased compared to CFSR winds at Gloria location. Both CFSR and ERA5 underestimate wind speeds. ERA5 performs better than the CFSR in lower wind speeds and worse in higher wind speeds. However, ERA5 winds have less bias and are more scattered than the CFSR winds against the satellite data. SWAN driven by CFSR winds performs better than the one driven by ERA5 winds against both buoy and satellite data.