89th American Meteorological Society Annual Meeting

Tuesday, 13 January 2009
The 2008 CoSPA* Forecast Demonstration *Collaboration Storm Prediction for Aviation
Hall 5 (Phoenix Convention Center)
William J. Dupree, MIT, Lexington, MA; and D. Morse, M. Chan, X. Tao, M. Wolfson, J. O. Pinto, J. K. Williams, D. Albo, S. Dettling, M. Steiner, S. G. Benjamin, and S. S. Weygandt
Poster PDF (1.8 MB)
Air traffic congestion in the US National Airspace System (NAS) has become a serious national problem. Several studies have shown that there is a critical need for timely, reliable and high quality forecasts of precipitation and echo tops with forecast time horizons of up to 12 hours. In order to address the short-term needs of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) as well as the long-term goals of NextGen, MIT Lincoln Laboratory, NCAR Research Applications Laboratory and NOAA ESRL Global Systems Division (GSD) are collaborating on developing a forecast system under funding from the FAA's Aviation Weather Research Program (AWRP).

During the summer of 2008 a research version of the CoSPA forecasting system was demonstrated to FAA management and parts of the aviation weather research community. The CoSPA system combines the latest technologies in heuristic nowcasting, extrapolation, statistical techniques and numerical weather prediction to produce rapidly updating (15 min) 0-6 hour forecasts of storm locations, echo tops (currently out to 2 hours) and intensities. The system blends the highly-skillful nowcasts with output from NOAA's High Resolution Rapid Refresh (HRRR) using phase correction and statistical weighting functions. The CoSPA 0-6 hour forecasts are accessible via a password protected website that builds upon the Corridor Integrated Weather System (CIWS) display and shows situational awareness products, forecasts and verification contours, as well as an animation of the weather from 6 hours in the past to 6 hours into the future.

This poster will discuss how this system satisfies current FAA needs and is an important first step in providing automated high-resolution probabilistic forecasts of storm characteristics that will be required for NextGen's automated air traffic planning system. The poster will include a description of the forecast algorithm, examples of the forecast features and forecast performance, and provide some details of ongoing research and planned efforts.

This work was sponsored by the Federal Aviation Administration under Air Force Contract No. FA8721-05-C-0002. Opinions, interpretations, conclusions, and recommendations are those of the authors and are not necessarily endorsed by the United States Government.

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