Operational Bridging, an Advanced Collaborative Convective Forecast in support of Traffic Flow Management
Authors: Kevin Johnston, Tom Lloyd, , Jarrod Lichty, Michael Pat Murphy, Matt Fronzak
The purpose of this manuscript is to provide an update on the Collaborative Decision Making (CDM) Weather Evaluation Team (WET) development and demonstration activity called Operational Bridging (OB). This is the second update provided to the AMS since the 91st American Meteorological Society Annual Meeting in Seattle, WA in January 2011.
In 2012, the WET demonstrated parts of the OB process in conjunction with the NOAA Aviation Weather Center's Summer Experiment, then went on to a full, limited-scope Operational Bridging demonstration in the National Airspace System (NAS) centralized within the Air Traffic Control System Command Center (ATCSCC).
The WET considers OB as an evolution of the Collaborative Convective Forecast Product (CCFP), a key CDM product developed more than 10 years ago which provides a consistent and collaborative forecast of convection so that Air Traffic Managers may develop a strategic traffic flow plan for the NAS. OB uses the familiar and effective Human-In-The-Loop concept with regard to the convective weather forecast process to support an accelerated transition from the probabilistic forecast and strategic planning mode to a deterministic forecast and tactical plan, in a timeframe the WET has designated as the “operational” planning timeframe. This is accomplished through event-driven forecasts informed by the forecaster's awareness of NAS components and processes and a continuous watch of observed and forecast weather.
The OB framework is flexible to allow the meteorologist to exploit timely scientific advancements in forecasting while still providing a Single Authoritative Source (SAS) of weather information, a core Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen) principle.
A systemwide implementation of OB over the NAS is a new process. This presentation will provide a review of the OB concept, an analysis of the Summer 2012 demonstration, and an overview of the path forward to OB implementation in the NAS.