Factors That Effect Model Suitability
The extent to which a specific air quality model is suitable for the evaluation of source impact depends upon several factors.
- Meteorological and topographical complexities of the area
- Level of detail and accuracy needed for the analysis
- Technical competence of those undertaking such simulation modeling
- Resources available
- Detail and accuracy of the data base, that is emissions inventory, meteorological data, and air quality data
Appropriate data should be available before any attempt is made to apply a model. A model that requires detailed, precise, input data should not be used when such data are unavailable. However, assuming the data are adequate, the greater the detail with which a model considers the spatial and temporal variations in emissions and meteorological conditions, the greater the ability to evaluate the source impact and to distinguish the effects of various control strategies.
Models are highly specialized tools. Competent and experienced personnel are an essential prerequisite to the successful application of simulation models. The need for specialists is critical when the more sophisticated models are used or the area being investigated has complicated meteorological or topographical features. A model applied improperly, or with inappropriately chosen data, can lead to serious misjudgments regarding the source impact or the effectiveness of a control strategy.
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