451 Weather Cubes and 4D Visualizations Including Cloud and Rain Fields Generated from Numerical Weather Prediction Data

Tuesday, 24 January 2017
4E (Washington State Convention Center )
Steven Fiorino, Air Force Institute, Wright Patterson AFB, OH; and J. Burley, B. Elmore, and J. Schmidt

Handout (7.4 MB)

The need to accurately account for atmospheric and radiative transfer effects when generating visualizations is vital to the modeling and simulations community. The Laser Environmental Effects Definition and Reference (LEEDR) is a verified and validated atmospheric propagation and radiative transfer code which creates physically realizable vertical and horizontal profiles of meteorological data and environmental effects using climatological and Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) data, allowing for post-event, nowcast, and forecast analysis for atmospheric radiative effects including particle-induced extinction, turbulence profiles, and path refraction (light bending) at any wavelength or spectral band between 200 nm and 8.6 m. By itself, LEEDR and its graphical user interface (GUI) has the capability to provide a “2D” picture of localized atmospheric radiative properties and processes. Wrapper classes provide a means to circumvent LEEDR’s GUI and easily execute batch runs for efficient, speedy parametric analyses to yield 4D weather cubes specific to a universal time reference, locations of interest (i.e. geo-referenced light source and remote sensor) and a user-provided output parameter such as transmission.  Each weather cube depicts the variability of output parameter, including refractivity and path-averaged index of refraction structure constant (Cn2), with respect to the source-endpoint geo-referenced location and, most importantly, relative to the ambient atmosphere at any wavelength or band from the UV to the RF.  Recent enhancements to weather cubes include the implementation of cloud and rain fields generated from the NWP data to produce realistic sky characterizations. Validation analyses of these characterizations using NASA’s Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) satellite images and weather radar reflectivity data are also presented.
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