David Fairbairn

Research Department, Earth System Assimilation Section, Coupled Assimilation Group


David is a scientist in the coupled assimilation team working on land surface data assimilation. He is mainly concerned with the soil moisture data assimilation scheme and the assimilation of space borne surface soil moisture observations.

Professional interests:

David is responsible for maintaining the near-real-time and reanalysis root-zone soil moisture products for the EUMETSAT Satellite Applications Facility for Coupled Hydrology (H SAF). Recent work focused on developing a reanalysed soil moisture product using ERA‐5 atmospheric forcing at 10 km resolution. He has also developed a new type of stand-alone surface analysis at ECMWF for research and reanalysis purposes. Future work will focus on improving the bias correction of ASCAT observations. He will also test applications of the stand-alone surface analysis, including land reanalyses and seasonal reforecasting activities.

Career background:

06/2017 - present - Scientist at ECMWF (funded by H SAF)

11/2016 - 05/2017 - Post-doc at Imperial College London

02/2014 - 11/2016 - Post-doc at CNRM, Meteo-France

10/2009 - 11/2013 -  Engineering doctorate joint with the University of Surrey/UK Met Office