18th Conference on Weather and Forecasting, 14th Conference on Numerical Weather Prediction, and Ninth Conference on Mesoscale Processes

Tuesday, 31 July 2001
An operational Local Data Integration System (LDIS) at NWS Melbourne
Peter F. Blottman, NOAA/NWS, Melbourne, FL; and S. M. Spratt, D. W. Sharp, A. J. Cristaldi III, J. L. Case, and J. Manobianco
The National Aeronautical and Space Administration=s (NASA) Applied Meteorology Unit (AMU) assisted the National Weather Service (NWS) Office at Melbourne, Florida to implement a Local Data Integration System (LDIS) during 2000-2001. The LDIS currently uses the analysis portion of the Advanced Regional Prediction System (ARPS), entitled the ARPS Data Analysis System, which is available from the University of Oklahoma. During the Summer of 2000, the AMU also provided assistance for implementing LDIS at the NWS Spaceflight Meteorology Group, located at the Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas.

The real-time data ingest at the Melbourne Forecast Office consists of background fields from the Rapid Update Cycle model, GOES-8 visible and infrared satellite imagery, Melbourne Weather Surveillance Radar - 1988 Doppler (WSR-88D) radial velocity and reflectivity fields, standard surface reports, and wind-tower and Doppler radar wind profiler observations from the meso-network at Kennedy Space Center (KSC) and Cape Canaveral Air Force Station (CCAFS). Available KSC/CCAFS data include 44 wind towers, five 915 MHz boundary layer wind profilers and one 50 MHz wind profiler. By incorporating all these data sets, especially those from the densely instrumented areas around KSC and CCAFS, the LDIS has the potential to benefit weather nowcasts and short range forecasts along Florida's Space Coast by more precisely depicting the state of the atmosphere.

This paper will illustrate the utility of LDIS by examining analyses during complex forecast situations. A suite of high resolution graphical products will be shown for selected cases, which assisted in the mesoscale diagnoses of wind, vertical motion, and cloud fields. Forecast improvements from utilizing these products in tandem with traditional model output and conceptual models will be highlighted.

Possible future improvements to LDIS will also be discussed. Some of the potential avenues include complementing the current data stream with reflectivity and velocity information from the NWS Tampa Bay WSR-88D site and the Federal Aviation Administration Terminal Doppler Weather Radar near Orlando. System enhancement to include the ARPS prognostic component is also anticipated. The ultimate goal is to establish a mesoscale analysis and prediction system that ingests all available local data sets and provides high-resolution numerical weather prediction guidance for east-central Florida.

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