Recent Advancements in the TAMDAR Sensor Network Expansion

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Thursday, 8 January 2015: 9:00 AM
231ABC (Phoenix Convention Center - West and North Buildings)
Neil Jacobs, Chief Atmospheric Scientist, Panasonic Avionics Corporation, Morrisville, NC; and D. Mulally, A. Anderson, J. Braid, P. Childs, A. Huffman, E. Wilson, and F. Gao

Lower and middle-tropospheric observations are disproportionately sparse, both temporally and geographically, when compared to surface observations. The limited density of observations is likely one of the largest constraints in numerical weather prediction. Atmospheric observations collected by a multi-function in-situ atmospheric sensor on aircraft, called the Tropospheric Airborne Meteorological Data Reporting (TAMDAR) sensor, contain measurements of humidity, pressure, temperature, winds aloft, icing, and turbulence along with the corresponding location, time, and altitude from built-in GPS which are relayed via satellite in real-time to a ground-based network operations center.

The TAMDAR sensor was originally deployed by AirDat in December 2004 on a fleet operated by Mesaba Airlines as a part of the NASA-sponsored Great Lakes Fleet Experiment.

Over the last 11 years, the equipage of the sensors has expanded beyond the continental United States (CONUS) to include most of North and Central America and Europe on more than 14 fleets as well as a few research aircraft. In April 2013, AirDat and the TAMDAR sensor network technology were acquired by Panasonic Avionics Corporation (PAC).

An update will be provided on the status of the TAMDAR sensor network deployment and data availability, as well as an update on data quality, error statistics, and operational forecasting utility, both from soundings and various data assimilation techniques.