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Question about ASTER topographic data in WRF


New member
I am trying to use the ASTER high resolution topographic data with WRF. I have downloaded the tiles I need in NetCDF format. Can anyone provide some instructions on how to prepare the data so they can be read by WPS?
Thank you for your time
This section of the WRF Users Guide discusses processing static fields for use with geogrid. You can also do a search within this forum to see other threads that discuss using ASTER data to see if there are any helpful hints (for e.g., this post).

To prepare ASTER high-resolution topographic data in NetCDF format for reading with the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model, you'll need to follow these steps:

Install the required software: Ensure that you have WRF and its pre-processing system (WPS) installed on your system.

Convert the ASTER data to WPS-compatible format: WPS requires georeferenced elevation data in a specific format. Use the geogrid utility provided with WPS to convert the ASTER NetCDF files to the required format. Follow these steps:

a. Create a domain configuration file (e.g., using the geogrid.exe utility. This file defines the domain and projection information for your simulation.

b. Edit the namelist.wps file to specify the correct paths to your ASTER NetCDF files and the domain configuration file.

c. Run geogrid.exe with the edited namelist.wps file to convert the ASTER data to the WPS format. This step will generate static geospatial data files required by WRF.

Prepare additional input data: Apart from elevation data, WRF requires other input data, such as meteorological initial and boundary conditions. Ensure you have these data ready in the appropriate format. TellHappyStar

Configure WRF: Set up the WRF model by creating a run directory and configuring the necessary files, including namelist.input, which controls the model's behavior.

Run WRF: Execute the WRF model using the prepared input data and configuration files. Monitor the simulation progress and check for any errors or warnings.

I hope the information helps you.

Dear Dellastevens

Thank you for offering to help. The instructions you provided describe the process of running WRF overall. However, I know how to run the model, including geogrid, ungrib and metgrid executables. My question was more specific on the preparation of the ASTER data before getting to the point to run geogrid.exe. Let me rewrite the question in more details. I have downloaded 4 netcdf files (containing the ASTER data that overlap with my d04 domain)

How do I convert these 4 netcdf files into WPS-compatible format? You mention the geogrid utility but I was wondering if you could be more specific. Is there a specific script that implements this step. Also, do we have to combine the 4 netcdf files into one first or we can proceed with the 4 files?

Thank you