An external view of the Met Office building at night.

Richard Renshaw

Areas of expertise

  • Atmospheric reanalysis.
  • Assimilation of cloud and precipitation observations.

Publications by Richard

Current activities

Richard manages the earth system data assimilation team which is part of Data Assimilation and Ensembles. The team works on three aspects of data assimilation. One is for the land surface, where we use observations to analyse soil moisture and soil temperature. These act as important boundary conditions for atmospheric forecast models. Another is the use of observations to initialise air quality models. The third is reanalysis, where we apply current forecast models and systems to historical data. This lets us build a consistent and comprehensive picture of past weather.

The major part of Richard's work is now on two reanalysis projects, using latest NWP (Numerical Weather Prediction) systems to analyse historical periods. One project is IMDAA (Indian Monsoon Data Assimilation and Analysis), funded by the Indian Ministry of Earth Sciences through the National Monsoon Mission. We are working with two Indian institutes, NCMRWF and IMD, to produce a 12km reanalysis over the Indian region from 1979 to the present. The other is a collaborative EU project UERRA.  The aim is to produce a high-quality regional analysis for studying and monitoring European climate. An ensemble of lower-resolution European reanalyses is also created to provide estimates of uncertainty in the results.

Career background

Richard finished a maths degree at Oxford University in 1988 and started work at the Met Office. He worked for a year on the use of AVHRR satellite data in the analysis of sea surface temperature. The next ten years were spent developing the assimilation of data from
satellite radiometers. The major achievement was the direct assimilation of radiances from the TOVS instrument. In 2000 he moved to Data Assimilation and Ensembles to work on assimilation for regional models, helping to introduce a 4D-Var scheme into the North Atlantic and European model.