Thirteen countries were represented. Two amendments to the Memorandum of Understanding were unanimously accepted by all Partners. They deal with the conditions of use of the ALADIN software.
The main steps of implementation or development of ALADIN-BELGIUM, ALADIN-FRANCE, ALADIN-LACE and ALADIN-MAROC models were presented. ALADIN-BELGIUM is at the present the operational mesoscale model with the finest resolution in the world. ALADIN-FRANCE whose domain has been extended in order to provide suitable coupling data for Portugal has been declared fit for operational use after a long validation process. The integration of the ALADIN-LACE model in the operational forecasts area is working well : this integration has been tested successfully during the severe flooding events in July 1997. The presentation about ALADIN-MAROC essentially dealt with plans about assimilation of TOVS and radar data.
The switch to ISBA was the main point of the discussion about operational problems. The problem of the code maintenance was raised. The necessity for each Members to devote staff to the maintenance and the core developments of ALADIN was pointed out.
The 1998 ALADIN Partners commitments were presented and the 1997 commitments were assessed : realization at 98%. The project is on continuous growth and development but the report on the evaluation of the ALADIN project also underlined some crucial problems such as the too frequent renewal of the research teams in several countries or the separation between research and maintenance tasks to be devoted to the ALADIN visitors in Toulouse. Among the other main outlooks for the project discussed, the need of a moderate shift of interest from physical parametrization to dynamical and numerical problems appeared. As an inter-Partners collaboration, Météo-France proposed to ALADIN members a license free of charge for national use of MEDIA model. A collaboration for the development of an ALADIN-MEDIA model for emergency situations was wished by different participants.
Please consult the Minutes of the Assembly for more details.