The Prototype Digital Weather Laboratory at Colorado State University

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A new weather laboratory for teaching and applied research has been developed at Colorado State University (CSU). The laboratory uses DEC workstations and also hosts various microcomputers via a local area network to interface with the Cooperative Institute for Research in the Atmosphere (CIRA) computer system shared by the Department of Atmospheric Science. This computer system centers on a cluster of VAX 700-class computers and includes several user-interactive subsystems, such as the Interactive Research Imaging System (IRIS), Direct Readout Satellite Earth Station (DRSES), and a weather display system (using General Meteorological Software Package [GEMPAK]). Through direct communication lines, the VAX 700-class computer cluster is linked to the mainframe computers of CSU, National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration/Environmental Research Laboratory (NOAA/ERL). Since the computer system has such broad interface with other computer systems, a unique feature of the new weather laboratory is its capability to provide not only current weather data but also real-time satellite, radar, mesonet, and profiler data. Examples of the products of the new weather laboratory are presented. Options and trade-offs encountered in the design of the new weather laboratory are discussed.

1 Cooperative Institute for Research in the Atmosphere (CIRA) Department of Atmospheric Science, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80523.

A new weather laboratory for teaching and applied research has been developed at Colorado State University (CSU). The laboratory uses DEC workstations and also hosts various microcomputers via a local area network to interface with the Cooperative Institute for Research in the Atmosphere (CIRA) computer system shared by the Department of Atmospheric Science. This computer system centers on a cluster of VAX 700-class computers and includes several user-interactive subsystems, such as the Interactive Research Imaging System (IRIS), Direct Readout Satellite Earth Station (DRSES), and a weather display system (using General Meteorological Software Package [GEMPAK]). Through direct communication lines, the VAX 700-class computer cluster is linked to the mainframe computers of CSU, National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration/Environmental Research Laboratory (NOAA/ERL). Since the computer system has such broad interface with other computer systems, a unique feature of the new weather laboratory is its capability to provide not only current weather data but also real-time satellite, radar, mesonet, and profiler data. Examples of the products of the new weather laboratory are presented. Options and trade-offs encountered in the design of the new weather laboratory are discussed.

1 Cooperative Institute for Research in the Atmosphere (CIRA) Department of Atmospheric Science, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80523.

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