New imaging and sounding sensors under development for future operational satellites will exceed the design of the current data structures and the visualization capabilities of the McIDAS-X software. Innovative techniques for visualizing and developing algorithms with these new data types are needed. The Integrated Data Viewer (IDV), a reference application based on the VisAD system that is being developed by the Unidata Program, demonstrates the flexibility that is needed in this evolving environment, using a modern, object-oriented software design approach.
A project is underway at SSEC/CIMSS to transition the current McIDAS-X users into a VisAD-based, open-source system, to be known as McIDAS-V, and to provide multi-spectral and hyper-spectral researchers and algorithm developers with the data manipulation and visualization tools to work in this data rich environment. NASA EOS MODIS and AIRS data are used in conjunction with other in situ and gridded data to develop new tools, techniques and products in the prototype McIDAS-V environment. A review of the current state of McIDAS-V will be presented as well as plans for future development and public release.