About the ACCESS model

The Australian Community Climate and Earth-System Simulator (ACCESS) weather models have been developed and tested by research staff from the Centre for Australian Weather and Climate Research (CAWCR) and are based on the UK Meteorological Office's Unified Model. The ACCESS suite of models has shown a significant improvement in accuracy over the Bureau's old weather model suite (GASP, LAPS and MesoLAPS), and output is available in map form or as gridded data products.

Model ACCESS-G
Domain Global
Resolution Approximately 80km
Previous Model Equivalent Global Analysis and Prediction (GASP)
Time Step and Duration 6 hourly to 168 hours (7 days)
Model Run Times and Typical Availability Times 00Z run available 0610Z
12Z run available 1810Z
Views Global
Southern Hemisphere
Australia
Indian Ocean
Pacific Ocean
Available Elements Precipitation
Mean sea level pressure (MSLP)
Surface pressure & rainfall (MSLP & precipitation)
MSLP & thickness
Wind speed and direction at 10m, 850hPa, 700hPa, 500hPa, 200hPa, and gradient
Geopotential height at 850hPa, 700hPa, 500hPa, and 200hPa
Temperature at 2m screen, 850hPa, 700hPa, 500hPa, 200hPa
2m screen dew point
Relative humidity at 2m screen, 850hPa, 700hPa, 500hPa, and 200hPa
Stability field
Model ACCESS-R
Domain Regional
Resolution 0.11° (~12km)
Previous Model Equivalent Limited Area Prediction System (LAPS_PT375)
Time Step and Duration 3 hourly to 72 hours (3 days)
Model Run Times and Typical Availability Times 00Z run available 0230Z
06Z run available 0830Z
12Z run available 1430Z
18Z run available 2030Z
Views Full domain
Australia
Available Elements Precipitation
Mean sea level pressure (MSLP)
Surface pressure & rainfall (MSLP & precipitation)
MSLP & thickness
Wind speed and direction at 10m, 850hPa, 700hPa, 500hPa, 200hPa, and gradient
Geopotential height at 850hPa, 700hPa, 500hPa, and 200hPa
Temperature at 2m screen, 850hPa, 700hPa, 500hPa, 200hPa
2m screen dew point
Relative humidity at 2m screen, 850hPa, 700hPa, 500hPa, and 200hPa
Model ACCESS-A
Domain Australia
Resolution 0.11° (~12km)
Previous Model Equivalent MesoLAPS (MESO_LAPS_PT125 & MA_LAPS_PT100)
Time Step and Duration 3 hourly to 48 hours (2 days)
Model Run Times and Typical Availability Times 00Z run available 04Z
06Z run available 10Z
12Z run available 16Z
18Z run available 22Z
Views Australia
7 Regional areas TODO
Available Elements Precipitation
Mean sea level pressure (MSLP)
Surface pressure & rainfall (MSLP & precipitation)
MSLP & thickness
Wind speed and direction at 10m, 850hPa, 700hPa, 500hPa, 200hPa, and gradient
Geopotential height at 850hPa, 700hPa, 500hPa, and 200hPa
Temperature at 2m screen, 850hPa, 700hPa, 500hPa, 200hPa
2m screen dew point
Relative humidity at 2m screen, 850hPa, 700hPa, 500hPa, and 200hPa
Model ACCESS-T
Domain Tropical
Resolution 0.375° (~37.5km)
Previous Model Equivalent Tropical (Extendd Domain) LAPS (TXLAPS_PT375)
Time Step and Duration 6 hourly to 72 hours (3 days)
Model Run Times and Typical Availability Times 00Z run available 0430Z
12Z run available 1630Z
Views Full domain
RSMC
Australia
SE Asia
SW Pacific
Northern Territory
Western Australia
Fiji
TODO
Available Elements Precipitation
Mean sea level pressure (MSLP)
Surface pressure & rainfall (MSLP & precipitation)
MSLP & thickness
Wind speed and direction at 10m, 850hPa, 700hPa, 500hPa, 200hPa, and gradient
Geopotential height at 850hPa, 700hPa, 500hPa, and 200hPa
Temperature at 2m screen, 850hPa, 700hPa, 500hPa, 200hPa
2m screen dew point
Relative humidity at 2m screen, 850hPa, 700hPa, 500hPa, and 200hPa
Deep layer mean wind
Model ACCESS-C+
Domain City
Resolution 0.05° (~5km)
Previous Model Equivalent City-based MesoLAPS variants (MESO_LAPS_PT050 models)
Time Step and Duration 1 hourly to 72 hours (3 days)
Model Run Times and Typical Availability Times 00Z run available 03-0310Z
12Z run available 15-1510Z
Views Victoria/Tasmania
Sydney
Brisbane
Adelaide
Perth
Available Elements Precipitation
Meteograms
Wind speed and direction at 2m, 10, gradient, and 850hPa
Mean sea level pressure (MSLP)
Model ACCESS-TC
Domain 3 relocatable domains
Resolution 0.11&deg (~12km)
Previous Model Equivalent Tropical-cyclone LAPS (TCLAPS)
Time Step and Duration  
Model Run Times and Typical Availability Times Run on demand
Views  
Available Elements Tracks
Model ACCESS-O3
Domain Global
Resolution Approximately 80km
Previous Model Equivalent Specialist model to replace the ozone and UV components of GASP
Time Step and Duration 6 hourly to 168 hours (7 days)
Model Run Times and Typical Availability Times 00Z run available 07Z
Views Global
Southern hemisphere
Australia
Available Elements UV index
Total ozone

Upper air charts are generally labelled with the pressure level in hectopascals (hPa), e.g. 500 hPa. The pressure decreases as altitude increases. For instance, the 250 hPa level is higher than the 500 hPa level. For some fields there are also charts representing the atmosphere 2 metres and 10 metres above the ground, and at the "gradient" level which lies about 1000 metres above the earth's surface and is the level most representative of the air flow in the lower atmosphere immediately above the layer affected by surface friction. This level is free of local wind and topographic effects (such as sea breezes, downslope winds etc).

Some charts show geopotential height, which approximates the actual height of a pressure surface above mean sea-level. Therefore, geopotential height contours on a particular map, e.g. 850 hPa, represent the height of that pressure surface.

Charts showing precipitation represent the amount of rainfall in millimetres which is forecast to fall at the ground over the preceding 3 or 6 hours. The period is shown in the chart heading as "3 hrly" or "6 hrly".

More detailed technical information on the ACCESS models is available in the NMOC Operations Bulletin No. 83 or the ACCESS NWP Data Documentation.