Session 9.8 Defining observation fields for verification of the Collaborative Convective Forecast Product (CCFP): Part 2

Thursday, 7 October 2004: 9:45 AM
Jennifer Luppens Mahoney, OAR, Boulder, CO; and S. Seseske, J. E. Hart, M. P. Kay, and B. G. Brown

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A critical challenge in evaluating the quality of the Collaborative Convective Forecast Product (CCFP) is determining how to appropriately match the forecasts to the observations so that statistical results are representative of the forecast characteristics and the forecast spatial and temporal scales, and portray the forecast’s operational relevance.

The CCFP is a forecast that is produced collaboratively between forecasters at the National Weather Service (NWS) Aviation Weather Center (AWC) and airline meteorologists and dispatchers. The CCFP is comprised of various forecast attributes which include convective coverage, cloud tops, forecast confidence, and storm growth and movement.

To evaluate the quality of the CCFP, verification methodologies that accurately reflect the forecast attributes are being developed. The foundation of the methodology is based on the definition of coverage. The observed coverage as defined for evaluation of the CCFP is the coverage of convective activity that occurs within a predefined area of influence. However, the predefined area of influence used to produce the coverage is based on the assumption that aircraft typically maintain a minimum distance of 10nm from active convection when in route to a destination. The measure of this distance is critical to the development of appropriate verification methodologies for the CCFP and other convective forecasts and forms the basis for defining the ‘scale’ of convection that impacts the flow of air traffic.

Therefore, we attempt to quantify the scale of the convection that impacts the flow of air traffic by testing a variety of influence areas and evaluate the impact of these differences on the statistical results for the CCFP.

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