237 Evaluation of NUCAPS products in AWIPS-II: Results from the 2017 HWT

Monday, 8 January 2018
Exhibit Hall 3 (ACC) (Austin, Texas)
Ashley Wheeler, Science and Technology Corporation (STC), Columbia, MD; and N. Smith, A. Gambacorta, and C. D. Barnet
Manuscript (468.2 kB)

Handout (7.9 MB)

The operational NOAA-Unique Combined Atmospheric Processing System (NUCAPS) retrieves atmospheric soundings from hyper-spectral infrared (IR) and microwave (MW) measurements from instrument pairs CrIS/ATMS and IASI/AMSU. NUCAPS near real-time soundings are ingested into the National Weather Service forecasting, display and analysis package AWIPS, and provide forecasters with independent measurements for evaluating evolving atmospheric conditions. The satellite overpass of Suomi NPP is approximately 1.5 hours after the 12z NWS daily radiosonde launch, allowing additional insight to the level of stability/instability within regions of interest during the afternoon and the beginning of potential storm development. The lineup of satellite overpasses Suomi NPP, MetOP, and JPSS-1 (in the future) supports excellent temporal and spatial coverage. Additionally, NUCAPS soundings are particularly useful for model comparisons and in regions lacking in-situ measurements (i.e. radiosondes). Unlike the single “point source” nature of radiosondes NUCAPS soundings creates a full 3-D representation of the atmosphere, most of which is often underutilized by forecasters.

During the NOAA Hazardous Weather Testbed (HWT) NUCAPS applications in AWIPS have been assessed by forecasters for the past 3 years, providing vital feedback and recognition. In order to satisfy forecasters requirements and improve the use of NUCAPS products in real-time weather applications, as developers, we must first address user recommendations and determine their feasibility. Therefore, this paper proposes to investigate specific cases highlighted by forecasters in the HWT Blog. Within these cases we will examine the skill of NUCAPS-derived convective indices in greater detail and explore future applications. NUCAPS retrievals can add value and contribute to other applications such as winter weather scenarios, and this study will allow us to explore those ideas.

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