Parametric Sensitivity Analysis of the WAVEWATCH III Model

Abstract

The parameters in numerical wave models need to be calibrated be fore a model can be applied to a specific region. In this study, we selected the 8 most important parameters from the source term of the WAVEWATCH III model and subjected them to sensitivity analysis to evaluate the sensitivity of the WAVEWATCH III model to the selected parameters to determine how many of these parameters should be considered for further discussion, and to justify the significance priority of each parameter. After ranking each parameter by sensitivity and assessing their cumulative impact, we adopted the ARS method to search for the optimal values of those parameters to which the WAVEWATCH III model is most sensitive by comparing modeling results with ob served data at two data buoys off the coast of north eastern Taiwan; the goal being to find optimal parameter values for improved modeling of wave development. The procedure adopting optimal parameters in wave simulations did improve the accuracy of the WAVEWATCH III model in comparison to default runs based on field observations at two buoys.

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