Wednesday, 13 January 2016
Instruments aboard the GOES-R and Joint Polar Satellite System series of satellites will provide imagery and other data sets relevant to operational weather forecasts, advisories, warnings, and other products generated by NOAA's National Weather Service. To prepare current and future weather forecasters in application of these data sets, Proving Ground activities have been established that demonstrate next generation satellite capabilities through use of similar sensors aboard NASA's Terra and Aqua satellites, and the most recently launched Suomi National Polar Orbiting Partnership (S-NPP) satellite launched in October 2011. As part of the larger Proving Ground efforts, NASA's Short-term Prediction Research and Transition (SPoRT) Center in Huntsville, Alabama partners with near real-time providers of S-NPP products (e.g. NASA, UW/CIMSS, UAF/GINA, etc.) to demonstrate future capabilities of GOES-R and JPSS. Several user groups across the CONUS and OCONUS have collaborated with SPoRT over the last year to evaluate the application of proxy products in order to provide the Operations-to-Research (O2R) feedback regarding their utility. JPSS products demonstrated within the Proving Ground include Snowfall and Rainfall Rates (ATMS). WFO forecasters in both the eastern and western CONUS as well as Alaska participated in both evaluations. In addition, the Rainfall Rate product was evaluated in conjunction with NASA-GPM activities to examine precipitation events during the Southwestern U.S. monsoon season. Another JPSS effort included hyperspectral-derived profiles (NUCAPS) to aid in the analysis by the Anchorage CWSU forecasters of extremely cold air aloft that can lead to aircraft freezing fuel during flight. Both GOES-R and JPSS proxy products included multi-spectral false color composites (i.e. RGB imagery) of the visible, near-infrared, and infrared bands (VIIRS, MODIS) applied to cloud analysis, particularly for hazards to aviation operations, but impacts were also seen in public and marine forecast products. Alaska WFOs evaluated the Nighttime and 24-hr Microphysics RGBs in both winter and summer for seasonal dependencies. As part of its support of National Centers, SPoRT also utilized the Japanese Himawari satellite in order to support the Operations Proving Ground (OPG) demonstration in late 2015 of future ABI instrument capabilities (RGB and single band imagery) given the similarity to the AHI instrument. Unique GOES-R proxy products related to Convective Initiation (current GOES) and Total Lightning (PGLM via ground-based LMA networks) were demonstrated at WFOs, CWSUs, and National Centers. Impacts in operations via user feedback from these aforementioned activities are presented.
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