HIWPP Aims to Improve High Impact Weather Forecasts

HIWPP

The High Impact Weather Prediction Project (HIWPP) is a collaboration between a dozen or more organizations led by the NOAA Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research (OAR) Earth System Research Laboratory (ESRL) and the OAR/Office of Weather and Air Quality. Funded as part of the Hurricane Sandy Disaster Relief Supplemental Appropriations, the project aims to improve near term (from “now” to several weeks or months in the future) prediction of dangerous weather events including hurricanes, floods, and blizzards.

In order to improve weather prediction capabilities, HIWPP collaborators are working on a variety of fronts, including:

  • increasing the resolution of existing hydrostatic global weather models to 10-13km,
  • testing next-generation non-hydrostatic global weather models, and
  • developing a nested moving hurricane model that provides more detailed hurricane track and intensity information within existing global models.
Description
A FIM visualization of hurricane Sandy.

According to ESRL Senior Research Project Manager Bonny Strong, the HIWPP team hopes to begin making output from the improved models available in early 2015. Once the appropriate infrastructure is in place, community members will be able to access output from enhanced versions of the Naval Research Lab's NAVGEM, NOAA Earth System Research Lab's FIM, and the National Weather Service's GFS models via a THREDDS Data Server (TDS). Organizations participating in HIWPP are hoping to receive well-informed feedback from researchers in the wider weather and climate community after the model output becomes available.

In addition to making the raw model output available to researchers, the HIWPP participants plan to provide tools for visualizing the data directly available through NOAA's Earth Information System (NEIS).

Strong notes that additional information on methods for accessing information produced by the project should be available in the early part of 2015, on the HIWPP web site. The project organizers are also working to create ways to manage feedback and discussion among community members; electronic mailing lists, online forums, and community meetings (either face-to-face or virtual) are all under consideration.

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