AWIPS Tips: Explore the CAVE Volume Browser: Model Soundings


Welcome back to AWIPS Tips! This week's topic is another exploration into one of the many features of CAVE's Volume Browser. In previous Volume Browser tips, we've covered Plan Views, Cross Sections, and Time Series, and this week is all about generating model soundings. CAVE can generate a sounding from any point using output from several different models. Follow the steps below to try it yourself.

1. Launch the Volume Browser

Launch the Volume Browser
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The Volume Browser can be launched from either the Tools or Models menus.

2. Change the display type

Change the display type
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The Volume Browser defaults to the Plan view display type. To generate a model sounding, open the Plan view (Display Type) menu and choose Sounding. This will change the display type menu label to Sounding and also adjust the sections below it to reflect the appropriate options for model soundings.

3. Choose the point

Choose the point
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The reference location for the sounding is set using the Points tool, which can be loaded into the active map editor from the Volume Browser. Open the Tools menu and select Points. This will load the Points resource into the open Map Editor. Place a point (or points) in the desired location(s) for the sounding. For a tutorial on how to edit Points, refer to AWIPS Tips: Using CAVE's Points and Baselines Tools.

4. Choose the sources and planes

Choose the sources and planes
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In the Sources section, select the Volume dropdown and choose any model. You may select as many as necessary for your needs.

TIP: Choose only items with a green box to its left, as this indicates the item is available on the connected EDEX. Do not choose an item without a green box, as the data are not available and thus cannot be displayed.

Unlike other Volume Browser display types, when a source is chosen for a model sounding, the Fields section will automatically populate with the required Sounding selection. In the Planes section select the Points dropdown, and select your desired point or points.

5. Make the final product selection

Make the final product selection
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After selecting the sources and planes, the Product Selection List will populate with the products available on the connected EDEX. The Time column on the left shows the day of the month and the forecast run, and the Inventory column on the right shows which frames are available (+ is an available frame, - is a missing frame).
By default, all products will be selected. If you choose to not load a product, left-click on it to deselect.

6. Load the soundings

Load the soundings
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Select Load to load all selected products into the NSHARP editor.

7. Display individual soundings

Display individual soundings
(click to enlarge)

Using the Sounding Inventory on the right of the NSHARP editor, you can click to select the specific frames, points, and sources that you selected in the Volume Browser.

TIP: When choosing frames from multiple sources, ensure you select frames with a red asterisk, denoting the source has data available at that forecast time.

For more information on using the NSHARP editor, refer to AWIPS Tips: Getting Started With the NSHARP Display Tool.

For more practice and tips for using the Volume Browser, check out our eLearning course: Learn AWIPS CAVE. To learn more about the course and request access, visit the AWIPS Educational Resources page. And check back in two weeks for the next blog post, where we’ll use python-awips to create a colored surface temperature plot.

To view archived blogs, visit the AWIPS Tips blog tag, and get notified of the latest updates from the AWIPS team by signing up for the AWIPS mailing list. Questions or suggestions for the team on future topics? Let us know at

This blog was posted in reference to v18.2.1-1 of NSF Unidata AWIPS


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