The FAA AWRP Oceanic Weather Program Development Team
Developing aviation weather products for remote, oceanic regions is challenging due to the lack of high resolution, accurate data sources that are available in the continental US (CONUS). Thus, digital data from both geostationary and polar orbiter satellites are primary data sources. Specific spectral channels are utilized to extract aviation pertinent parameters. Products such as cloud top height and geostationary cloud and water vapor-tracked winds are created over the large oceanic domains in the Pacific, Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico. The Global Forecasting System (GFS) model provides numerical weather prediction guidance for oceanic domains. Technology transfer of products developed within other AWRP PDTs to the Oceanic Weather PDT is not necessarily a straightforward process and requires considerable modifications and adjustments due to the differing data sources.
The OW PDT has developed a cockpit display of the cloud top height product that depicts top heights between 30-40kft and above 40kft. An ASCII display is generated and uplinked for printing after an aircraft position report is sent. Real-time testing of this capability will be accomplished in the fall of 2005. Adaptation of this display capability to other oceanic weather products is expected in the future.