Debias Coarsely, Sample Conditionally: Statistical Downscaling through Optimal Transport and Probabilistic Diffusion Models


We introduce a two-stage probabilistic framework for statistical downscaling between unpaired data. Statistical downscaling seeks a probabilistic map to transform low-resolution data from a (possibly biased) coarse-grained numerical scheme to high-resolution data that is consistent with a high-fidelity scheme. Our framework tackles the problem by tandeming two transformations: a debiasing step that is performed by an optimal transport map, and an upsampling step that is achieved by a probabilistic diffusion model with extit{a posteriori} conditional sampling. This approach characterizes a conditional distribution without the need for paired data, and faithfully recovers relevant physical statistics from biased samples. We demonstrate the utility of the proposed approach on one- and two-dimensional fluid flow problems, which are representative of the core difficulties present in numerical simulations of weather and climate. Our method produces realistic high-resolution outputs from low-resolution inputs, by upsampling resolutions of 8x and 16x. Moreover, our procedure correctly matches the statistics of physical quantities, even when the low-frequency content of the inputs and outputs do not match, a crucial but difficult-to-satisfy assumption needed by current state-of-the-art alternatives.

arXiv preprint arXiv:2305.15618