Observational datasets currently available via MADIS include radiosonde soundings, automated aircraft reports, NOAA and non-NOAA wind profilers, non-NOAA experimental microwave radiometer observations, operational and experimental GOES winds, POES soundings and radiances, and several types of surface datasets. The latter includes water vapor observations derived from signals from geo-positioning satellites (GPS) and a unique national collection of over 20,000 mesonet stations from local, state, and federal agencies, and private firms.
Beginning in FY06, MADIS will also provide support for "UrbaNet", a surface research network involving NOAA's Air Resources Laboratory and the private sector, which is designed to explore the utility of using integrated commercial and government meteorological data in forecasting within the complex topology of the urban environment. MADIS has been established as the mechanism to ingest, integrate, quality control and distribute the UrbaNet mesonet observations in support of homeland security, emergency management, dispersion modeling, and general forecasting applications.
As with all MADIS data files, the UrbaNet observations will be available in uniform formats with uniform QC structures within the data files. They will be compatible with the NWS AWIPS systems, and with data assimilation systems such as the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) 3D-variational system. Software support is provided for all MADIS datasets through the use of an Application Program Interface (API) that provides users with easy access to the data and QC information. The API allows each user to specify station and observation types, as well as QC choices, and domain and time boundaries. Many of the implementation details that arise in data ingest programs are automatically performed, greatly simplifying user access to the disparate datasets, and effectively integrating the database by allowing, for example, users to access many different types of surface observations (e.g. UrbaNet, ASOS, modernized COOP, maritime, and non-NOAA mesonets) through a single interface.
First made publicly available in July 2001, MADIS datasets have proven to be popular within the meteorological community. ESRL/GSD now supports hundreds of MADIS users, including the majority of NWS forecast offices, NCDC, NCEP, and many universities and private companies. Additionally, MADIS supplies non-NOAA data providers with QC and station monitoring information which have proven useful in their maintenance activities.
This paper will cover the current status of the MADIS project and include details on the UrbaNet network such as station locations, observations reported, and future plans.
Supplementary URL: http://madis.noaa.gov