A data-assimilated Taiwan Ocean Prediction (ATOP) system is being developed at the National Central University, Taiwan. The model simulates sea-surface height, three-dimensional currents, temperature and salinity and turbulent mixing. The model has options for tracer and particle-tracking algorithms, as well as for wave-induced Stokes drift and wave-enhanced mixing and bottom drag. Two different forecast domains have been tested: a large-grid domain that encompasses the entire North Pacific Ocean at 0.1° × 0.1° horizontal resolution and 41 vertical sigma levels, and a smaller western North Pacific domain which at present also has the same horizontal resolution. In both domains, 25-year spin-up runs from 1988 -2011 were first conducted, forced by six-hourly Cross-Calibrated Multi-Platform (CCMP) and NCEP reanalysis Global Forecast System (GSF) winds. The results are then used as initial conditions to conduct ocean analyses from January 2012 through February 2012, when updated hindcasts and real-time forecasts begin using the GFS winds. This paper describes the ATOP system and compares the forecast results against satellite altimetry data for assessing model skills. The model results are also shown to compare well with observations of (i) the Kuroshio intrusion in the northern South China Sea, and (ii) subtropical counter current. Review and comparison with other models in the literature of "(i)" are also given.
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