The utility of VISSR Atmospheric Sounder (VAS) temperature and moisture soundings and cloud and water vapor motion winds in defining a storm and its surroundings at subsynoptic scales has been examined using a numerical analysis and prognosis system. It is shown that the VAS temperature and moisture data, which specify temperature and moisture well in cloud-free areas, are complemented by cloud and water vapor motion data generated in the cloudy areas. The cloud and water vapor “winds” provide thermal gradient information for interpolating the soundings across cloudy regions. The loss of analysis integrity due to the reduction of VAS sounding density in the cloudy regions associated with synoptic activity is ameliorated by using cloud and water vapor motion winds. The improvement in numerical forecasts resulting from the addition of these data to the numerical analysis is recorded.
1 Visiting Scientist from Bureau of Meteorology, Australia. Present affiliation: Cooperative Institute for Meteorological Satellite Studies, 1225 West Dayton St., Madison, WI 53706.
2 NOAA/NESDIS Development Laboratory, 1225 West Dayton St., Madison, WI 53706.
3 NOAA/NESDIS Development Laboratory, Systems Design and Applications Branch, 1225 West Dayton St., Madison, WI 53706.