88th Annual Meeting (20-24 January 2008)

Tuesday, 22 January 2008: 2:30 PM
Pre-launch Algorithms and Risk Reduction in Support of the Geostationary Lightning Mapper for GOES-R and Beyond
222 (Ernest N. Morial Convention Center)
Steven J. Goodman, NOAA/NESDIS/ORA, Camp Springs, MD; and R. J. Blakeslee, W. Koshak, W. Petersen, D. E. Buechler, P. R. Krehbiel, P. Gatlin, and S. Zubrick
The Geostationary Lightning Mapper (GLM) is a single channel, near-IR imager/optical transient event detector, used to detect, locate and measure total lightning activity over the full-disk as part of a 3-axis stabilized, geostationary weather satellite system. The next generation NOAA Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES-R) series with a planned launch in 2014 will carry a GLM that will provide continuous day and night observations of lightning from the west coast of Africa (GOES-E) to New Zealand (GOES-W) when the constellation is fully operational. The mission objectives for the GLM are to 1) provide continuous, full-disk lightning measurements for storm warning and nowcasting, 2) provide early warning of tornadic activity, and 3) accumulate a long-term database to track decadal changes of lightning. The GLM owes its heritage to the NASA Lightning Imaging Sensor (1997-Present) and the Optical Transient Detector (1995-2000), which were developed for the Earth Observing System and have produced a combined 13 year data record of global lightning activity. Instrument formulation studies were completed in March 2007 and the implementation phase to develop a prototype model and up to four flight models is expected to be underway in the latter part of 2007. In parallel with the instrument development, a GOES-R Risk Reduction Team and Algorithm Working Group Lightning Applications Team have begun to develop the Level 2 ground processing algorithms and applications. Proxy total lightning data from the NASA Lightning Imaging Sensor on the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellite and regional test beds (e.g., Lightning Mapping Arrays in North Alabama and the Washington DC Metropolitan area) are being used to develop the pre-launch algorithms and applications, and also improve our knowledge of thunderstorm initiation and evolution. Real time lightning mapping data are being provided in an experimental mode to selected National Weather Service (NWS) forecast offices in Southern and Eastern Region. This effort is designed to help improve our understanding of the application of these data in operational settings. Examples will be shown on how these data are used within the NWS office in generating updates to short-term forecasts of significant convective weather and in the overall severe thunderstorm warning process.

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