Contact: Aaron Boone and Christophe Peugeot

The AMMA project was organized in recent years with the main goal of obtaining a better understanding of the intra-seasonal and inter-annual variability of the west-African monsoon (WAM). In particular, land-atmosphere coupling is theorized to be significant in this region. A high priority goal of AMMA is therefore to better understand and model the influence of the spatio-temporal variability of surface processes on the atmospheric circulation patterns and the regional water cycle. The ALMIP project therefore affords the possibility to improve the understanding of critical land surface processes over west Africa within the context of an Land Surface Model (LSM) intercomparison project. The idea is to force state-of-the-art land surface models with the best quality and highest (space and time) resolution data available in order to better understand the key processes and their corresponding scales. In ALMIP Phase 2, LSMs are being evaluated using observational data from three heavily instrumented supersites from the AMMA-Couplage de l'Atmosphère Tropicale et du Cycle Hydrologique (CATCH) observing system (Mali, Niger, and Bénin). The AMMA-CATCH window covers a north-south transect encompassing a large eco-climatic gradient. A coordinated set of model experiments over the three AMMA- CATCH sites will provide a good idea of the contrasting characteristics and processes in the Sahel and Soudano-Guinean regions. Two main experiments will be performed with the first one at the mesoscale for each of the three super sites. A second set of experiments will be performed at the local scale for several selected sites within each of the mesoscale squares. The simulations encompass the 2005¬2007 Intensive Ob- serving Period with a special focus on the analysis during the Special Observing Period in 2006. In addition to evaluation using field data, LSM simulations will also be compared to results from detailed vegetation process and hydrological models that have already been extensively validated over this region.


  • Boone, A., A. C. V. Getirana, J. Demarty, B. Cappelaere, S. Galle, M. Grippa, T. Lebel, E. Mougin, C. Peugeot and T. Vischel, 2009: The African Monsoon Multidisciplinary Analyses (AMMA) Land surface Model Intercomparison Project Phase 2 (ALMIP2). GEWEX News, Novemeber, 19(4), 9-10.
  • Boone, A., P. de Rosnay, G. Basalmo, A. Beljaars, F. Chopin, B. Decharme, C. Delire, A. Ducharne, S. Gascoin, M. Grippa, F. Guichard, Y. Gusev, P. Harris, L. Jarlan, L. Kergoat, E. Mougin, O. Nasonova, A. Norgaard, T. Orgeval, C. Ottlé, I. Poccard-Leclercq, J. Polcher, I. Sandholt, S. Saux-Picart, C. Taylor, and Y. Xue, 2009: The AMMA Land Surface Model Intercomparison Project. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 90(12), 1865-1880, doi:10.1175/2009BAMS2786.1