The Inaugural Hazardous Weather Testbed Hydrology (HWT-Hydro) Experiment

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Monday, 5 January 2015: 5:15 PM
131C (Phoenix Convention Center - West and North Buildings)
Race Clark III, CIMMS/Univ. of Oklahoma/NOAA/NSSL, Norman, OK; and J. Gourley, Z. L. Flamig, E. M. Argyle, B. R. Smith, S. M. Martinaitis, L. P. Rothfusz, and Y. Hong

The inaugural Hazardous Weather Testbed Hydrology (HWT-Hydro) Experiment took place in July 2014 at the National Weather Center in Norman, Oklahoma. Over a four-week period, 17 National Weather Service (NWS) meteorologists and hydrologists used developmental tools from the Flooded Locations and Simulated Hydrographs (FLASH) suite of flash flooding products to issue experimental flash flood watches and warnings across the conterminous United States. Additionally, forecasters partook in weather briefings, completed surveys, conducted exercises to validate and evaluate their experimentally-issued products, and shared their experiences in NWS-wide webinars. The experiment was planned and coordinated by scientists and researchers at the National Severe Storms Laboratory (NSSL) and the University of Oklahoma.

At the time of the HWT-Hydro experiment, the FLASH suite of products contained twenty-six products, including output from two hydrologic models, precipitable water tools, forecast and observed precipitation recurrence intervals, and flash flood guidance. Other products from the High Resolution Rapid Refresh model and the NSSL Multi-Radar/Multi-Sensor (MRMS) project were tested. HWT-Hydro activities have resulted in the ability to successfully display experimental flash flood forecasting tools in the AWIPS-2 software platform. Also, as a result of collaboration with the NWS Warning Decision Training Branch during and after the experiment, a plan for future development of NWS training modules on FLASH and MRMS products has been enacted. HWT-Hydro acted as a floating Weather Forecast Office and focused on flash flood risk areas delineated via daily weather briefings coordinated with the Weather Prediction Center's Flash Flood and Intense Rainfall Experiment. This presentation will provide an overview of the HWT-Hydro experiment, project goals, and preliminary findings.