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  • Author or Editor: James M. O'Sullivan x
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William P. Mahoney III and James M. O'Sullivan

The potential availability of millions of surface observations from passenger vehicles and fleets represents a potentially significant opportunity for the weather community. The success of this opportunity rests with the weather community's technical understanding and eventual adoption of these unique datasets and their level of participation in connected vehicle initiatives within the transportation community. All sectors of the weather enterprise (e.g., public, private, and academic) must become involved to help define, shape, and support the effort to realize a distinct and positive outcome on the weather and transportation communities. For this reason, the American Meteorological Society (AMS) Board on Enterprise Planning (BEP), under the Commission on the Weather and Climate Enterprise (CWCE), established an Annual Partnership Topic (APT) Committee in 2009 focused on mobile observations and their potential for use by the weather and transportation communities. The primary finding of the committee is that high-quality weather information about the roadway environment, including both current observations and forecasts, communicated in a timely and effective manner will help drivers make better and safer decisions regarding travel plans and react properly when faced with potentially compromised conditions; however, there are several technical, financial, societal, and institutional barriers that must be overcome before the full potential of mobile observations can be realized. This paper discusses several key issues important in advancing this concept, including potential benefits, barriers to acceptance, research needs, data quality and metadata, and business models.

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