The potential use of the National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) Regional Spectral Model (RSM) for downscaling seasonal tropical cyclone (TC) activity was analyzed here. The NCEP RSM with horizontal resolution of 50 km, was used to downscale the ECHAM4.5 Atmospheric General Circulation Model (AGCM) simulations forced with observed sea surface temperature (SST) over the western North Pacific. An ensemble of ten runs for June-November 1994 and 1998 was studied. The representation of the TCs is much improved compared to the low-resolution forcing AGCM, but the TCs are not as intense as observed ones, as the RSM horizontal resolution is not sufficiently high. The large-scale fields of the RSM are examined and compared to both the AGCM and the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) reanalysis. The large-scale fields of RSM characteristics are in general similar to those of the reanalysis. Various properties of the TCs in the RSM are also examined such as first positions, tracks, accumulated cyclone energy (ACE) and duration. While the RSM does not reproduce the higher number of TCs in 1994 than in 1998, other measures of TC activity (ACE, number of cyclone days) in the RSM are higher in 1994 than in 1998. Copyright (C) 2006 Royal Meteorological Society.
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