Terminal Ceiling & Visibility Product Development for Northeast Airports
A number of terminals in the northeast United States meet these criteria. Many of these airports share characteristically similar C&V exposure; in particular, they are largely impacted by low ceiling and visibility conditions associated with transient synoptic-scale weather systems that are most common during the winter season. Included are the major northeast corridor terminals in the New York City airspace (Laguardia, Kennedy, and Newark), Boston, Philadelphia, and in the Washington, DC airspace (Reagan and Dulles).
The multitude of phenomena contributing to IMC (e.g. frontal cloud shields, advection and radiation fog, precipitation of varying intensity and type, etc.) poses a difficult forecasting challenge. The Terminal C&V PDT is pursuing a variety of candidate technologies that can be integrated to provide a comprehensive solution. Trials of these forecast technologies are being developed using the NYC airspace as an experimental domain for both weather and operations. Development is progressing on three fronts: 1) improvement in the delivery of existing C&V information, 2) development of new forecast technologies, and 3) integration with operational information to provide a complete guidance tool.
This paper introduces an experimental display tool and distribution mechanism for delivering existing C&V data and forecasts, focused on the NYC airspace. It also provides an overview of the forecast technologies under development. These include terminal-specific Numerical Weather Prediction model applications, statistical methodology, and short-term track and trending of cloud and precipitation, using radar, satellite, and surface observations.