Aviation user training taf interpretation and supplemental products
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Aviation User Training: TAF Interpretation and Supplemental Products. Outline. TAF Basics TAF Definitions and Limitations TAF Interpretation-reading into the TAF Supplemental Products Links. TAF Issuance Times. 06z Monday – 00z Saturday. 00z Saturday - 06z Monday.

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Aviation User Training: TAF Interpretation and Supplemental Products

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Aviation User Training: TAF Interpretation and Supplemental Products


Outline

  • TAF Basics

  • TAF Definitions and Limitations

  • TAF Interpretation-reading into the TAF

  • Supplemental Products

  • Links


TAF Issuance Times

06z Monday – 00z Saturday

00z Saturday - 06z Monday

Every 3 hours starting at 00z Saturday

Unscheduled AMD’s as needed

00, 06, 12, 18z issued 20-40 min prior

Scheduled AMD’s issued around top of the hour

  • Every 2 hours starting at 06z Monday

  • Unscheduled AMD’s as needed

  • 00, 06, 12, 18z issued 20-40 min prior

  • Scheduled AMD’s issued around top of the hour


TAFs

  • Forecast for conditions within 5SM of the center of an airport

  • Valid for 30 hrs at ORD and 24 hrs at MDW, RFD, DPA, GYY


Definitions and limitations


FM – From Groups

  • A new FM group indicates a significant change in prevailing conditions

  • >50% probability of conditions occurring


TEMPO

  • >50% probability of occurrence and,

  • Last for 1 hour or less in each instance and,

  • Cover less than half the time period of the TEMPO group

  • May not last long or may be intermittent


PROB30

  • 30% chance of occurrence

  • Cannot be used in the first 9 hours of the valid TAF period


VC – Vicinity

  • Donut shaped area between 5 and 10 SM from the center of the airport

  • Used when there is a >50% probability of occurrence within the donut and it is expected to occur more than half of the forecast time period

  • A prevailing condition in the 5-10 SM donut

  • VCTS, VCSH, VCFG


CB

  • Appended to the cloud group (BKN030CB)

  • May be included without TS

  • Indicates TS is possible but:

    • It is NOT certain it will occur at the airport or in the vicinity


Available Probabilities

  • >50%

  • <50% (if we don’t include something)

  • 30%...but only beyond the first 9 hours

  • Lots of room for interpretation!!


TAF Challenges

  • Complex definitions

  • Rigid format with little room to convey specific uncertainty or confidence

  • However…there is more information available and there are ways to better utilize the TAF


Getting the Most From the TAF

TAF Interpretation


The Trend is Your Friend

  • Look for trends within each TAF

  • Look for trends in successive TAFs (can you access earlier versions?)

    • Can indicate our confidence level in the forecast

    • Can establish if chances for occurrence are increasing or decreasing

  • Unscheduled amendments indicate a high degree of confidence in forecast changes


Trends Within A TAF

Indicates –TSRA may be developing

SHRA/TSRA between 5 and 10 SM from the airfield

TAF

KORD 231740Z 2318/2424 15012KT P6SM SCT040CB

FM232100 16012KT P6SM VCSH BKN040CB

TEMPO 2322/2324 30024G50KT 1SM TSRA BKN030CB OVC050

FM240000 30010KT P6SM –SHRA BKN040CB

FM240200 30010KT P6SM SCT040

>50% chance of occurrence <50% of the TEMPO period


Trends Among Successive TAFs


Accessing Previous TAFs

http://www.crh.noaa.gov/lot/?n=aviation


Additional Information:

The Aviation Forecast Discussion


Aviation AFD

  • Your window into the forecasters’ mind

  • Updated with every scheduled TAF issuance

  • Use side-by-side with the TAF

  • Specifically outlines concerns for ORD/MDW and provides level of forecast confidence

  • May also include alternative scenarios for lower confidence or lower probability situations


Additional Information:

Valuable Seasonal Products


Warm Weather Tips

  • Four Product Approach

    • TAF

    • Aviation Forecast Discussion

    • Thunderstorm Tactical Decision Aids

    • CCFP


Our Approach to Forecasting Thunder

  • What is the trigger (cold front, trough…)?

  • How much coverage should we expect with this type of trigger?

  • How long does TS usually last with this type of setup?

  • How confident are we that TS will occur? (what mitigating factors are there?)

  • What is the most likely time window for occurrence?


Conveying Confidence

  • CB

    • can be used to indicate the presence of CB’s

    • hints at the possibility of TS

  • VCTS

    • prevailing TS in the 5-10 mile donut around the terminal

    • used when coverage is scattered/or storms skirting by and/or there is uncertainty that the terminal will be directly affected


TS TDA

  • TS probability at key arrival and departure points

  • Does not show TS chances at the terminals or areas between the terminals and the gates

  • Frequently updated


Alternate TS TDA


CCFP

  • Designed for the en route environment; strategic planning of efficient routes

  • Too coarse for use in the terminal area

  • Can be used to help establish confidence in potential for TS occurrence in the general area near terminals


Winter Weather Tips

  • Four Product Approach

    • TAF

    • Aviation Forecast Discussion

    • ORD Winter Precipitation Outlook

    • Winter Weather Headlines (watches/warnings/advisories)


Experimental O’Hare Winter Precipitation Outlook

  • November 1-March 31

  • 5 am, 11 am, 5 pm local time

  • No updates between issuances


Winter Weather Headlines


Links

  • Add latest links here


Questions??

Scott Shelerud


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