21st Conference on Hydrology


Potential real-time fully-automated operational rain gauge quality control tools for time-critical NWS hydrologic applications

Chandra R. Kondragunta, NOAA/NWS, Silver Spring, MD; and F. Ding and K. Shrestha

High-quality rain gauge data are critical to the hydrologic mission of the National Weather Service (NWS), both as direct precipitation input and for correcting remote sensor precipitation estimates for statistical biases. Currently, these gauge data are quality controlled manually at River Forecast Centers (RFC's) with the help of Graphical User Interface tools available in the Advanced Weather Interactive Processing System (AWIPS). The need for automated quality control tools arises from the fact that these rain gauge data are extensively used in the Multi-sensor Precipitation Estimator (MPE) algorithm which combines rain gauge data with radar and satellite estimates. The MPE currently runs at every hour at RFCs. Enhancements are planned to run MPE at sub-hourly intervals in Weather Forecast Offices (WFOs) for flash flood forecasting applications.

Current semi-automated quality control tools within AWIPS, such as the Spatial Consistency Check and Multi-Sensor Check, only flag suspect gauge reports for later manual oversight. While such tools are acceptable for RFC operations where there is a designated Hydrometeorological Analysis Support (HAS) function for manual editing of suspect gauges before they are used in applications, many WFO operations require faster product generation, and manual editing is time-consuming. In order to meet the needs of WFO hydrologic operations, the Office of Hydrologic Development has undertaken the task of developing fully automated tools. While we realize the challenge of developing fully automated quality control tools for rain gauge data, the first step in this effort is to enhance the existing semi-automated tools to fully automated level with some level of verification. In this paper we will discuss the proposed enhancements. Objective validation results will be discussed.

Poster Session 4, Weather to Climate Scale Flood Forecasting Posters
Wednesday, 17 January 2007, 2:30 PM-4:00 PM, Exhibit Hall C

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