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Identification of Aviation Weather Hazards Based on the Integration of Radar and Lightning Data

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The National Weather Service Eastern Region is carrying out a national risk-reduction exercise at the Baltimore–Washington Forecast Office in Sterling, Virginia. The primary objective of this project is to integrate information from remote sensor technologies to produce comprehensive state-of-the-atmosphere reports that promote aviation safety. Techniques have been developed and tested to identify aviation-oriented hazardous weather based on data from conventional radars, a national lightning detection network, and collateral observations from new Automated Surface Observing System (ASOS) sites that are being deployed throughout the nation. From July through September 1993, an experimental observational product to identify convective activity within 30 n mi of six airports from southern Virginia to Delaware was transmitted three times each hour to personnel at Weather Service Offices and Center Weather Service Units and to the meteorologists and flight dispatchers of five major air carriers. This user-oriented evaluation and the associated statistical analysis has provided important feedback to assess the utility of the product as a supplement to ASOS. Integration of information from several products generated by the new Doppler radar at Sterling with lightning network data is being pursued for the second phase of the project. The National Weather Service will determine the viability of this approach to generate products to routinely supplement the information provided by ASOS on either a national or a local basis.

*NOAA, National Weather Service Forecast Office, Sterling, Virginia.

+Current affiliation: NOAA, National Weather Service Office, Binghamton, New York.

#Current affiliation: NOAA, National Weather Service Office, Tallahassee, Florida.

**NOAA, National Weather Service, Eastern Region Headquarters, Scientific Services Division, Bohemia, New York.

Corresponding author address: Andrew D. Stern, NOAA, National Weather Service Forecast Office, 44087 Weather Service Road, Sterling, VA 20166-9603.

The National Weather Service Eastern Region is carrying out a national risk-reduction exercise at the Baltimore–Washington Forecast Office in Sterling, Virginia. The primary objective of this project is to integrate information from remote sensor technologies to produce comprehensive state-of-the-atmosphere reports that promote aviation safety. Techniques have been developed and tested to identify aviation-oriented hazardous weather based on data from conventional radars, a national lightning detection network, and collateral observations from new Automated Surface Observing System (ASOS) sites that are being deployed throughout the nation. From July through September 1993, an experimental observational product to identify convective activity within 30 n mi of six airports from southern Virginia to Delaware was transmitted three times each hour to personnel at Weather Service Offices and Center Weather Service Units and to the meteorologists and flight dispatchers of five major air carriers. This user-oriented evaluation and the associated statistical analysis has provided important feedback to assess the utility of the product as a supplement to ASOS. Integration of information from several products generated by the new Doppler radar at Sterling with lightning network data is being pursued for the second phase of the project. The National Weather Service will determine the viability of this approach to generate products to routinely supplement the information provided by ASOS on either a national or a local basis.

*NOAA, National Weather Service Forecast Office, Sterling, Virginia.

+Current affiliation: NOAA, National Weather Service Office, Binghamton, New York.

#Current affiliation: NOAA, National Weather Service Office, Tallahassee, Florida.

**NOAA, National Weather Service, Eastern Region Headquarters, Scientific Services Division, Bohemia, New York.

Corresponding author address: Andrew D. Stern, NOAA, National Weather Service Forecast Office, 44087 Weather Service Road, Sterling, VA 20166-9603.
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