MRMS: A Successful Case of Research-To-Operations

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Thursday, 8 January 2015: 11:30 AM
232A-C (Phoenix Convention Center - West and North Buildings)
Mark B. Miller, NOAA/NWS, Silver Spring, MD; and L. J. Cano

The Multi-Radar Multi-Sensor (MRMS) system exists as a research and operational system for the integration and assimilation of multiple sensor observations and numerical analysis/prediction fields for the identification and short-term prediction of hazardous weather and water conditions such as tornadoes and flash floods. The MRMS system was specifically conceived and designed to address the objectives of and to support Weather Ready Nation, NextGen Weather, and Integrated Water Resource Services (IWRS) initiatives. The MRMS system serves research and development communities as a platform for development of advanced applications in radar, satellite, hydrology and aviation, providing a real-time environment to test and evaluate new science and technologies for operational implementation (R2O). The MRMS system was developed over that last two decades at the National Severe Storms Laboratory (NSSL) in collaboration with National Weather Service (NWS) forecast field offices and regional headquarters, River Forecast Centers (RFC), Radar Operations Center (ROC), Office of Science and Technology (OS&T), Storm Prediction Center (SPC), Aviation Weather Center (AWC), Weather Prediction Center (WPC) and the National Water Center (NWC). During 2014, the MRMS system and code was transitioned to National Centers for Environmental Predictions (NCEP) and runs operationally as part of and with support from NWS Integrated Dissemination Program (IDP). The MRMS system running at NCEP operational computer farm produces and disseminates over 123 product grids over CONUS used for detection and short-term prediction of severe weather threats such as tornadoes, hail, damaging winds, precipitation phase and rate, and flash flood every 2-minutes with spatial resolutions of 1x1 km. The MRMS system products serve a broad-spectrum of governmental agencies in emergency management, agriculture, water resource management and aviation as well as universities and the private sector. The principle user of MRMS products is the National Weather Service and national centers where MRMS products have been documented to improve the accuracy and lead-time of warnings and forecasts. The presentation will provide a history and the challenges of transitioning MRMS system to operations as well as provide insight on how to effectively and efficiently move research into NWS operations.