32nd Conference on Broadcast Meteorology/31st Conference on Radar Meteorology/Fifth Conference on Coastal Atmospheric and Oceanic Prediction and Processes

Sunday, 10 August 2003: 5:00 PM
A.D.O.N.I.S. MicroCast™: A Private Sector Mesocale Model
Michal K. Thomas, Weather Central, Inc., Madison, WI
The MicroCast™ Model is a high-resolution mesoscale forecast model developed at Weather Central, Inc. The primary use of the model output is aimed toward the television broadcast industry. It was the first on-air model to bridge the gap between past, present, and future weather conditions. The non-hydrostatic MicroCast™ model debuted and revolutionized the broadcast industry in 1999 by being the first and only model run on-site at a broadcast station. MicroCast™ became the only forecast model capable of producing extremely smooth flowing graphical forecast output for on-air presentation. The model can be fully customized by the user and runs automatically and reliably without intervention. Over 140 forecast parameters are available for use and the model domain can be relocated anywhere in the lower 48 states, southern Canada, and northern Mexico to focus on significant weather events. This provides on-air television stations access to the highest number of forecast parameters available anywhere. The model physics are based on aspects of the University of Wisconsin-NMS and Colorado State RAMS models that have been used by a variety of government and research organizations.

MicroCast™ is designed to run on a Windows-Intel based platform located on-site at a customer location. Resolution and model domain can be fully customized by the user and it provides the ability to easily setup and run specialized model output to focus on significant weather events. Users can directly choose forecast output parameters that are known to be most beneficial in forecasting specific significant weather events across their local viewing area. The MicroCast™ model gives Broadcast Meteorologists the ability to provide timely, informative, and local forecast information to viewers. This ability can strengthen the reputation and trust a station develops with its viewers. MicroCast™ provides “localized” forecasting capabilities to television meteorologists with resolutions up to 4-km. Graphical forecast output is available at 15-minute intervals for up to 60 hours (240 total graphic frames). MicroCast™ is the only model available that provides this type of detail, giving television stations the ability to show amazingly smooth on-air graphics down to the hyper-local level. Model output includes the choice of more than 140 forecast variables that can aid in forecasting and communicating the effects of localized mesoscale events up to 60 hours in advance.

The MicroCast™ model provides forecasters with the latest in model research and development. Professional research meteorologists with over 50 years of combined numerical model experience are continuously focused on MicroCast™ development to ensure the best possible forecast results. The model output is routinely analyzed through the use of direct analysis, calculated daily verification data, and model forecast case studies. These are all performed to help direct the focus of our development efforts. We also encourage customer feedback to determine where and how to enhance model performance. MicroCast™ is the only broadcast model that performs this type of comprehensive model analysis. Full case studies can be found on the Weather Central, Inc. website at: http://www.weathercentral.tv

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