From the national network of mobile platforms, which operate all hours of the day, hazardous weather conditions are identified. Mobile platforms are able to depict road segments that may be icy, areas of potential fog, and areas of extreme road heat. During the winter months, road temperature is a critical attribute for indicating surface hazards. There are times when 2m air temperatures sampled by surface weather stations are not representative of the actual surface condition. As the mobile platform road temperature data infuses decision support systems, weather forecasters are able to better identify hazardous areas and assess risks to forecasts that influence the issuance of winter weather advisories or warnings. The National Weather Service (NWS) now includes mobile platform road temperature data in decision support tools that are used to communicate weather conditions to emergency managers and state DOT managers. GST will present examples of mobile platform data in NWS decision support, as well as a case study when surface weather stations indicated rain with 4C temperature, whereas surface conditions were actually icy (freezing rain) and the sub-freezing surface temperature was captured by mobile platforms.
Mobile platforms are also becoming a source of very important data for summertime convective storm models. The heat and humidity data from mobile platforms can pinpoint thermal boundaries and ‘dry lines' that are situated between fixed-site weather stations. These thermal or moisture boundaries often are focal points for the development of severe thunderstorms, floods, and tornadoes. The acquisition of heat and humidity data by mobile platforms along their routes is a new data source for assimilation into convective models. GST and the University of Oklahoma are assimilating mobile platform data into the Advanced Regional Predictive System (ARPS).