11A.1 Examining an Atmospheric River in Virtual Reality

Thursday, 16 January 2020: 8:30 AM
253B (Boston Convention and Exhibition Center)
Patrick C. Meyers, Univ. of Maryland, College Park, College Park, MD; and M. Quick, E. Lee, D. Li, K. E. Lukens, S. Kusselson, S. D. Rudlosky, B. Brawn-Cinani, and A. Varshney

Virtual and augmented reality tools are becoming more prevalent as the technology continues to mature. A three-dimensional immersive view of atmospheric phenomena facilitates the investigation of spatial relationships of the atmospheric state. Satellite observations from GOES-R and JPSS were ingested into an interactive demonstration that explores an atmospheric river event from February 2019. Record-breaking rains soaked southern California, spawning mudslides near San Francisco. Our selection of datasets includes satellite observations of radiance, cloud height, and wind speed from GOES-17, and atmospheric profile products (i.e. Advected Layered Precipitable Water and NUCAPS) from JPSS and other low-earth orbit satellites. Handheld controls allow users to interrogate the data with many functionalities that are similar to the traditional AWIPS forecasting software. Forecasters can view model guidance and satellite products, loop products over time, query data values at a point, and open skew-T plots from NUCAPS. Visualizing the moisture plume in three-dimensions enables forecasters to see environmental conditions surrounding the atmospheric river, potentially improving their forecasting capabilities.
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