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Expanding SPoRT Collaborations with WFOs in other Regions Opportunities for NASA and the NWS Why Extend SPoRT to Other Regions Benefits to NOAA / NWS: Provide tools / capabilities to improve short-term weather forecasts to a broader spectrum of WFOs – save lives and property

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Why Extend SPoRT to Other Regions

  • Benefits to NOAA / NWS:
  • Provide tools / capabilities to improve short-term weather forecasts to a broader spectrum of WFOs – save lives and property
  • Demonstrate how the unique data can be used to address forecast problems of other regions – different forecast problems
  • Prepare forecasters for data and products from new operational NOAA instruments
  • Benefits to NASA:
  • Demonstrate the utility of NASA observations for operational applications – societal benefits
  • Help NOAA better prepare for the use of measurements from new systems
stick with sport mission paradigm

Mission: Apply unique NASA Earth science research and observations to improve the accuracy of short-term (0-24 hr) weather prediction at the regional and local scale

Real-time NASA data and research capabilities

Stick with SPoRT Mission / Paradigm

  • Apply SPoRT Paradigm
  • Focused research – match forecast problem to data / capabilities
  • Evaluate solutions in “testbed” mode
  • Transition to WFOs and end users in their decision support system (AWIPS / AWIPS2)
    • training
    • feedback
    • assessment
  • End user (forecaster) involvement in entire process
  • http://weather.msfc.nasa.gov/sporthttp://weather.msfc.nasa.gov/sportblog
don t just throw data over the fence

Work with Regions / SSDs and WFOs

  • Explore unique / challenging forecast problems in region
  • Match NASA solutions to problems
  • Identify collaborative WFOs
    • group by common interests / problems
    • must be willing to actively participate – use data, feedback, interaction with SPoRT
    • Initially 2 groups of 3-4 WFOs in each region (1 in AK, HI)
  • Need Regions to be / provide a focal point and endorsement of expansion effort


MODIS False Color

Don’t Just Throw Data over the Fence

Total Lightning

AMSR-E Rain Rate




Forecast Problems / Solutions

  • SPoRT does not presume we know the issues forecasters deal with on a daily basis!
  • Expansion in Southern Region –coastal WFOs
    • talk with coastal WFOs about problems and what data / tools they thought we had that might help – SSTs, off-shore systems, local modeling (made some visits to these WFOs)
  • Some Southern Region forecast problems
    • timing, location, intensity of severe weather and precipitation
    • diagnostic analysis of current conditions, cloud cover, visibility, fog, etc. (esp. at night), morning minimum temperatures (and its local variations)
    • wildfire locations and visibility restrictions
    • snow cover
    • coastal weather processes (sea breeze convection / temperatures), off-shore precipitation processes
    • weather in data void regions (storms, moisture sources – atmospheric rivers)
  • Identify regional forecast problems in other regions
    • Input through Regions – SPoRT will make Region/WFO visits
    • Alaska and Hawaii will have significantly different forecast issues – SPoRT to visit to learn first hand

transitioning unique NASA data and research technologies to operations

data dissemination to wfos

SPoRT ingests real-time MODIS and AIRS data from several direct broadcast systems, AMSR-E products from near real-time sources, other products from NESDIS, etc.

    • highest resolution possible (down to 250m for MODIS)
    • some dbs also produce products which are useful in our applications
    • SPoRT generates need products when not available for other sources
    • data / products reformatted and sectorized for AWIPS
  • Work with WFOs on product display in AWIPS
    • develop appropriate localizations for display
    • consistent with similar products from GOES, enhancement tables, units, etc.
  • Suite of some 30 SPoRT products delivered to Regions via LDM
    • Region delivers selected products to targeted WFOs

Disseminate existing data / products to other Regions / WFOs - straight-forward – simpler with AWIPS2 (no need to sectorize the data)

    • obtain access to data / products from additional dbs for AK and HI
    • pass on localization instructions, naming conventions, etc.
    • can use existing product training modules, etc.

New products follow same approach – just require slight localization modifications

Data Dissemination to WFOs


Training is key to the transition of products to operations

    • Provide technical information on products to be used
    • Communicate to other partners the lessons learned from initial testing
    • Demonstrate utility and application to a forecast issue

Adult professionals who want to know how to apply the product in the workplace

SPoRT utilizes a variety of training methods

    • Distance learning and site visits
    • Regular monthly coordination calls
    • PowerPoint and Articulate Presenter modules

Modules will be updated and re-used for forecasters in other Regions. New modules easily developed.

5 product modules developed in last year – transitioning to LMS



Collaborative Feedback / Assessments

  • SPoRT expects active participation from forecasters at participating and collaborating WFOs
  • Regular view products and use them to address forecast issues
  • Provide SPoRT liaisons feedback on product use, strengths, weaknesses, limitations, and suggested improvements
  • Participate in regular collaboration calls and collaboration workshops
  • Jointly (with SPoRT) develop and publish assessment on the utility of NASA observations and research capabilities to improve short-term weather forecasts
    • internal reports
    • conference papers
    • journal articles


phasing of expansion


  • Establish focal points within SPoRT and each Region
    • SSD Chief endorsement of collaboration – coordinate collaboration calls
    • identify NWS focal point for each region – could be at SSD level or an active WFO
  • Transition existing products to collaborating WFOs - existing forecast problems
    • regional LDMs, AWIPS, localizations, etc.
  • Form collaboration teams in other Regions
    • two groups of 3-4 WFOs in each
    • product / problem orientated
    • Identify forecast problems to be addressed with existing data
  • Add full time SPoRT liaison to assist with this collaboration
    • SPoRT liaison assigned to each region or by common forecast problem
  • Secure a real-time direct broadcast data stream for Alaska and Hawaii regions

Phasing of Expansion


Phasing of Expansion

  • Short-term (continued)
  • Use collaboration teams to identify new forecast problems
    • match data / products to problem
    • develop transition plan (including schedule) for each (solution, testbed, transition, training, and assessment)
  • Integrate other non-SPoRT value-added products into dissemination process
    • e.g., unique UW/CIMSS products, CIRA, etc.
    • other NESDIS products
    • allows external collaborators to concentrate on new product development rather than transition
    • involve external collaborators in training, feedback, and assessment process
    • SPoRT remains single focal point for non-standard data into AWIPS/AWIPS2 (eases coordination burden on WFOS/ Regions)

Phasing of Expansion

  • Mid-term
  • Transition SPoRT suite of products to AWIPS2
    • streamlines data dissemination
    • creates many new product / display opportunities
  • Transition data from NPP / NPOESS satellites (follow-on to NASA satellites)
  • Implement transition of new products to address forecast problems
    • test with interested WFO
    • develop training, conduct impact assessment
  • Add NWS Application Integration Meteorologists to each region – shared funding
    • new position in Huntsville WFO / Southern Region
    • help with liaison / transition activities within regions
    • could be at Region or active WFO
    • help in non- SPoRT transitions as well (GOES-R or “Satellite” Proving Ground)

Expansion Questions

  • What if AWIPS2 is delayed? -- AWIPS still works
  • What if NASA satellite sensors fail? -- NPP / NPOESS
  • What if all WFOs really want and can use SPoRT data? How do we handle that? -- can provide, NWS take lead on interaction
  • What is the relationship between SPoRT and others who are providing unique data to WFOs? -- collaboration
  • How do we interact with River Forecast Centers? National Centers (NHC, TPC, etc.) -- like WFOs in AWIPS2
  • SPoRT needs additional financial resources to expand. What if those are not available? -- concentrate on focused transitions