The following twelve projects are identified as potential areas to significantly improve weather support to space launch from the ER/KSC. In this context, “advanced” projects are those that are too large, too expensive, and/or too technical to be done by the operational weather support offices or by their normal operational research avenues. The twelve projects identified to date are as follows:
1) Extremely Advanced Mesoscale Numerical Weather Prediction 2) Dual-Polarization Weather Radar 3) Automated Weather Warning Dissemination 4) Fill Data Voids 5) Integration and Display of Weather Sensors 6) Improved 50 MHz Doppler Radar Wind Profiling (DRWP) 7) AFIT Weather Laboratory Upgrades 8) Cloud Depiction Device 9) Global Positioning Satellite-Precipitable Water (GPS-PW) Micro-Network 10) Improved Lightning Launch Commit Criteria (LCC) 11) Automated Weather Forecast Advisor / Training Assistant 12) Remote Sensing Electric Field Profiler
This paper will briefly review the complexities of weather support to the space program at the ER/KSC, the suite of operational weather sensors used in that support, and the challenges of weather forecasting in east central Florida. The majority of the paper will describe the desired advanced weather projects and explain how they could improve weather support to space launch operations. The authors hope this paper will open discussion on possible ways to implement these advanced weather projects into space launch operations.