1CNRM-GAME, Météo-France and CNRS URA 1357, Toulouse, France
2CNRM, Direction de la Météorologie Nationale, Casablanca, Morocco
3Laboratoire d'Aérologie, Toulouse, France
4CERFACS, Toulouse, France
5DP, Météo–France, Toulouse, France
Abstract. By applying four-dimensional variational data-assimilation (4D-Var) to a combined ozone and dynamics Numerical Weather Prediction model (NWP), ozone observations generate wind increments through the ozone-dynamics coupling. The dynamical impact of Aura/MLS satellite ozone profiles is investigated using Météo–France operational ARPEGE NWP 4D-Var assimilation system for a period of 3 months. A data-assimilation procedure has been designed and run on 6-h windows. The procedure includes: (1) 4D-Var assimilating both ozone and operational NWP standard observations, (2) ARPEGE transporting ozone as a passive-tracer, (3) MOCAGE, the Météo–France chemistry and transport model re-initializing the ARPEGE ozone background at the beginning time of the assimilation window. The Degrees of Freedom for Signal diagnostics show that the MLS data covering the 68.1–31.6 hPa vertical pressure range are the most informative and their information content is nearly of the same order as tropospheric humidity-sensitive radiances. Furthermore, with the help of error variance reduction diagnostics, the ozone contribution to the reduction of the horizontal divergence background-error variance is shown to be better than tropospheric humidity-sensitive radiances. Moreover, by using observation minus forecast statistics, it is found that the ozone assimilation reduces the wind bias in the lower stratosphere.