Climate Data

ERA-Interim: derived components

Era-Interim data are used to derive monthly mass, moisture and energy budget products. Each term is available. Atmospheric energy, mass, and moisture budgets can be computed by vertically integrating reanalysis fields and employing suitable corrections (e.g. mass). The budgets are uniquely valuable for interpreting the climate's mean state and its variability. They can also be used in conjunction with complementary data (i.e. top of atmosphere fluxes) to diagnose the surface energy budget and over large scales these estimates can rival or surpass other methods for doing so.

The total atmospheric energy budget consists of the combined dry static energy (Cp•T+g•Z), latent energy (Lv•Q), and kinetic energy terms, the tendency and divergence of which can be explicitly computed. These fields are available individually, or in sum as total energy divergence (TEDIV) and total energy tendency (TETEN). All budget fields are computed on monthly timescales on the native model grid.

Terms available and their definition:


TEDIV = del•(Cp•UT+ g•UZ+L•UQ+ UK, Cp•VT+ g•VZ+L•VQ+ VK)

DSEDIV = del•(Cp•UT+ g•UZ, Cp•VT+ g•VZ)

LEDIV = del•(L•UQ, L•VQ)

KEDIV = del•(UK, VK)

Technical Notes

A detailed outline of the process of estimating energy flows is described here.

Years of Record

1979/01 to 2012/12
temporal metadataID:




Data Time Period Extended?

yes, data set is extended


Spatial Resolution

256x512 (~0.7x0.7)

Ocean or Land


Missing Data Flag

spatially complete

Vertical Levels

Earth system components and main variables

Data Access: Please Cite data sources, following the data providers' instructions.

Key Figures

Click the thumbnails to view larger sizes



ERA Interim: annual mean of evaporation minus precipitation. (Climate Data Guide: J.Fasullo)
ERA Interim: Total energy tendency: (a) Jan 1998 (top); (b) 1979-2012 January climatology; (c) January 1998 anomaly. (Climate Data Guide: D. Shea)
ERA Interim: Mass corrected vertically integrated meridional temperature: (a) Jan 1998 (top); (b) 1979-2012 January climatology; (c) January 1998 anomaly. (Climate Data Guide: D. Shea)

Cite this page

National Center for Atmospheric Research Staff (Eds). Last modified 02 Jan 2014. "The Climate Data Guide: ERA-Interim: derived components." Retrieved from

Acknowledgement of any material taken from this page is appreciated. On behalf of experts who have contributed data, advice, and/or figures, please cite their work as well.