ObjectivesThe Demonstration Division evaluates promising new atmospheric observing technologies developed by the Environmental Research Laboratories and other organizations and determines their value in the operational domain. Activities range from the demonstration of scientific and engineering innovations to the management of new systems and technologies. Currently the division is engaged in five major projects:
• Assessment of the Radio Acoustic Sounding System (RASS) for temperature profiling.
• Development of an operational surface-based integrated precipitable water (IPW) vapor monitoring system using the Global Positioning System (GPS), known as GPS-IPW.
• Development and deployment of the Alaska Profiler Network.
• Addition of wind and temperature data from Boundary Layer Profilers (BLPs) operated by other agencies.
NOAA Profiler Network
The division manages, operates, and maintains the NPN comprising the Profiler Control Center (PCC) in Boulder, Colorado, and 35 tropospheric wind profilers located mostly in the central United States (Figure 32). The NPN wind profilers are upward looking, sensitive 404- and 449-MHz Doppler radars that measure the winds above the profiler site. They are specifically designed to measure vertical profiles of the winds. Typically, once an hour the wind profilers produce a vertical "stack" of winds from near the surface to above the tropopause. They can operate in most weather conditions including cloudy and precipitating weather. The radars are sensitive enough to detect fluctuations in refractive index caused by the turbulent mixing of air with slightly different temperature and moisture content. The resulting fluctuations are used as a tracer of the mean wind in the clear air. Data are sent in real time from each profiler to the PCC for quality control, processing, and distribution. About one-half of the profiler sites are augmented with surface observing systems that provide basic surface meteorological observations; about one-half are equipped to measure precipitable water vapor using commercial GPS receivers; and one-third provide RASS temperature profiling in the lower troposphere.
Figure 32. The NOAA Profiler Network, including the Alaska profilers.
NPN Data Distribution, Usage, and Collaboration
In conjunction with the National Weather Service (NWS) modernization, NPN data
are distributed to all NWS forecast offices, government and university
atmospheric researchers, private meteorologists, the National Centers for
Environmental Prediction (NCEP) including the Storm Prediction Center, and
foreign agencies responsible for weather prediction via the World
Meteorological Organization (WMO). Forecasters and the research community
routinely use profiler data to:
• Verify numerical weather models.
• Support observation-based research.
• Monitor the location of the low-level nocturnal jet.
• Track thunderstorm movement and development, and determine thunderstorm inflow/outflow boundaries.
• Determine depth of cold or warm air.
• Perform vertical motion studies.
• Locate weak troughs and triggering of severe weather.
• Evaluate the potential for flash floods.
• Locate upper-level low pressure systems.
• Determine the presence of cold or warm air aloft.
• Forecast aircraft turbulence.
• Study low-level windstorms.
• Study cloud/fog development or dispersal.
• Provide fire fighting support and public safety.
As listed in the examples below, division staff collaborate with other federal
agencies and foreign governments in their efforts to develop and implement
• The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) uses a 50-MHz system at the Kennedy Space Center to provide support for launch operations.
• The Department of Energy (DOE) routinely operates profilers at the Southern Great Plains Cloud and Radiation Test bed (CART) site in Oklahoma.
• The Canadian Atmospheric Environment Service is involved in plans to install wind profilers in remote Arctic regions of Canada where manned balloon launch facilities are difficult to maintain.
• The European Center for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts is involved in plans to develop and implement wind profiler networks around Europe.
• Australia is examining the feasibility of installing a network that could provide data from sites around the entire perimeter of the continent.
• The Meteorological Service of New Zealand is considering the replacement of some of its upper-air sites with wind profilers to more effectively support its weather forecasting services.
• The China Satellite Launch and Tracking Control General is considering the use of wind profilers for their Xichang Space Launch Center.
• The National Space Development Agency of Japan is studying the use of wind profiler technology to support launch activities in Japan.
Radio Acoustic Sounding System (RASS) for Temperature Profiling
The original concept for an operational profiler network included the Doppler radar profiler as part of an integrated upper-air remote sensing system capable of measuring wind, temperature, and humidity. The division is involved in an effort to achieve this goal; progress includes the addition of RASS for temperature profiling in the lower troposphere and GPS water vapor systems for moisture measurements at the NOAA Profiler Network sites. Photos of the profiler antenna (horizontal grid), RASS (crown-like instruments in each corner), and GPS-IPW (inset) are shown in Figure 33.
Although the temperature measurements produced by the RASS-equipped profilers are accurate to better than 1oC to the uppermost limit of their coverage, the altitude to which they can measure is limited. RASS measurements with the 404-MHz profilers typically extend up 2.5 to 4 km above ground. This limitation is generally caused by stronger lower tropospheric horizontal winds carrying the acoustic signal out of the radar beam. A mitigative measure included placement of the RASS acoustic sources at all four corners of the wind profiler antenna.
Figure 33. Photos showing the profiler antenna (large horizontal grid), the Radio Acoustic Sounding System (crown-like instruments in four corners), and the GPS-IPW instrument (inset).
Surface-Based GPS Water Vapor Monitoring
The measurement of atmospheric water vapor is essential for operational weather forecasting, climate monitoring, and research. A high priority in modern weather prediction is to improve the accuracy of short-term cloud and precipitation forecasts, but the lack of timely water vapor data has severely limited this progress. Although primarily designed and used for navigation, positioning, and time transfer, GPS provides an unanticipated opportunity to measure elements of the atmosphere's thermodynamic structure. In collaboration with NOAA's National Geodetic Survey, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, the University of Hawaii, and the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research GPS Science and Technology Program, the division is leading the use of ground-based GPS observations for monitoring atmospheric water vapor.
Alaska Profiler Network
The concept for a profiler network in Alaska dates back ten years ago, when Mt. Redoubt (southwest of Anchorage) erupted sending volcanic ash 38,000 feet into the atmosphere. The ash caused extensive damage to a KLM 747 aircraft, but good piloting prevented a major disaster. The NWS Alaska Region management quickly began investigating ways to forecast aviation hazards resulting from airborne volcanic ash. A promising tool for predicting ash trajectories was the profiler, since it can measure wind profiles up to 53,000 feet and provide updates every six minutes. NOAA's response was to redirect one of the profilers coming off the manufacturer's (then Unisys, now Lockheed Martin) production line to Alaska. The system was installed near Homer, Alaska, and was operating within months of the decision. The Homer profiler aided NWS in monitoring winds during subsequent volcanic eruptions, even though sea and ground clutter (caused by less-than-optimal siting) limited its full potential.
Since then, the division has been implementing a plan to deploy three new profilers in Alaska with better siting. The data from these profilers will be used to warn of hazards to commercial aviation in the event of a volcanic eruption, and to support other NWS activities in Alaska. Division staff collaborated with DOD and the Environmental Technology Laboratory (ETL) in the implementation of the Alaska Profiler Network. When planning for the Alaska project began, the U.S. Air Force was using a 404-MHz NPN profiler in support of launch operations at Vandenberg AFB, California. The frequency of operation needed to be changed to 449 MHz to accommodate DOD operational requirements. NOAA and DOD agreed to jointly develop 449-MHz profilers by combining their similar schedules, requirements, and funding. The Vandenberg AFB profiler upgrades included a profiler data processor supplied by Radian International and a new 449 MHz antenna and power amplifier supplied by Lockheed Martin. The Alaska profilers use existing NPN data processing systems as well as the newly designed antennas and power amplifiers. This collaborative effort further reduced logistics costs through the joint use of certain spare parts.
Upon completion of the three Alaska systems and the upgrade of the Vandenberg system, these units will be integrated with the existing NPN, and will use similar procedures for operations, maintenance, and logistics support. Data from the Alaska profilers will flow to the NWS operations and other recipients of NPN data. As the Alaska profilers become operational, staff will begin studies on the key performance areas of interest regarding plans for a future national profiler network.
Boundary Layer Profilers
Apart from the NPN, low-power profilers that measure winds and temperature in the boundary layer have begun operating around North America in recent years. There are approximately 80 BLPs either currently operating or planned for installation. The division is working in cooperation with other agencies to acquire BLP wind and temperature data, which are processed into hourly quality-controlled products and ultimately distributed along with products from the NPN. If the data from these radars can be gathered together in real time with sufficient volume and quality, the resultant national dataset will have utility for multiple applications such as numerical weather prediction, subjective weather forecasting, and air quality research and monitoring.
The division acknowledges the growing importance of the Web and
enthusiastically supports the FSL-wide policy of finding creative ways to use
this technology more effectively to accomplish its mission.
Staff continued to operate and maintain the NPN, and to supply upper-air and surface data to a wide range of users. Thirty profiler sites are routinely sending data to the Boulder Profiler Control Center. The data from each site are transmitted to the Profiler Hub computer system within the PCC for processing and quality control. The hourly averaged profiles are then sent to the NWS Telecommunications Gateway for distribution to the regional NWS forecast offices and to the National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP). Besides being accessible on the Web, the datasets continue to be made available to about 150 universities, private sector subscribers, the government research community, and the World Meteorological Organization. All six-minute and hourly averaged profiler data are archived by the National Climatic Data Center.
In addition to routine operations, the quality and availability of NPN data were improved by profiler power amplifier and antenna reliability enhancements, and quality control of hourly winds.
Profiler Power Amplifier and Antenna Reliability Enhancements – All of the power amplifiers at the 404-MHz profiler sites have been modified, as well as the power amplifier at the Kansas City test bed. Modifications included redesign of the 1-kilowatt solid-state power amplifier modules, and an increase in the cooling airflow in the power amplifier cabinet. These changes, combined with careful rebuilding of the amplifiers and lower operating power, have reduced the number of transistor failures to levels consistent with the profiler requirements for overall mean time between failures.
The profiler antennas at all 404-MHz sites have been retrofitted with redesigned beam steering units, and all antenna radomes have been examined for water intrusion. The switches in all of the beam steering units were redesigned for higher reliability and ease of replacement. The antennas are tested periodically and continue to receive proper maintenance as necessary.
Quality Control of Hourly Winds – The availability of hourly winds to the NWS exceeded 90% this year (Figure 34). This high availability follows the completion of significant enhancements to the power amplifiers, antennas, and lightning suppression capability. Other hardware modifications that enhanced availability include interference suppression devices, new receivers, and beam steering units. The figure shows a decrease in the availability of hourly winds (<90%) during the spring and summer, compared to slightly higher availability during the fall and winter seasons. This pattern, detected every year of the NPN's operation, can be attributed to two factors: increased lightning activity causing commercial power problems and profiler hardware damage, and site air conditioner failures. Staff will continue to investigate ways to further improve data quality and availability.
New Profiler Locations – The Homer, Alaska, profiler was dismantled, the system was shipped to the Boulder Assembly Facility for refurbishment by division staff, and was then shipped to and reinstalled at Wolcott, Indiana. The site will become fully operational as soon as grounding and surge protection installations are completed.
The profiler located at Bloomfield, Connecticut, which served as an engineering development model as well as NPN Prototype-2, was moved to the Lockheed Martin plant at Syracuse, New York. Frequency surveys were performed at several candidate sites in the Syracuse area, and a site adjacent to the Syracuse airport was selected. A construction contract was issued, and all dirt, concrete, and fence work was completed in the late summer. The Syracuse profiler will have both a 404-MHz and a 449-MHz power amplifier. It will normally operate at 449 MHz, but will have the ability to switch to 404 MHz for testing and evaluation of 404-MHz components.
Figure 34. NOAA Profiler Network data availability from January 1998 – December 1998.
The complete upgrade of the Demonstration Division Web homepage last year resulted in a new appearance and more useful and easier-to-access information. Newly added graphics not only improve the appearance but also provide an easy- to-use, intuitive means to acquire information and data. Wind and moment images were upgraded to use standard compression techniques that decrease download time.
RASS Temperature Profilers
Seven NPN sites in the central United States have RASS temperature profiling capabilities, including Platteville, Colorado; White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico; Hillsboro and Haviland, Kansas; and Vici, Purcell, and Haskell, Oklahoma. The four RASS acoustic sources (located inside the antenna field fence near the corners of the wind profiler antenna) provide security and allow for some lateral advection of the acoustic signal above the profiler site caused by local winds. A decrease in the RASS height coverage has been noted during periods of strong low-level winds. Ongoing experiments are being conducted at Platteville and Purcell to investigate this effect, with acoustic sources placed 35–140 m upwind of the profiler sites. Typical improvements of 500–1000 m in the RASS height coverage are observed when the 70–140 m upwind acoustic sources are activated. Investigation continues concerning optimal acoustic source location distance upwind of the site and acoustic output power, also referred to as the annoyance factor.
GPS Water Vapor Demonstration Network
During 1998 the division installed 35 GPS integrated precipitable water vapor (GPS-IPW) systems: 19 at NOAA profiler sites, two at NWS facilities, three at other NOAA facilities, and 11 at the Coast Guard Differential GPS sites (Figure 35). An expansion of the GPS Water Vapor Demonstration Network beyond the NPN which was envisioned in 1995 became a reality in 1998. This was possible through the collaborative efforts of the Demonstration Division, the NOAA National Geodetic Survey and National Data Buoy Center, and the Coast Guard Navigation Center. Figure 36 shows typical sites comprising the NOAA GPS-IPW network, including federal agencies outside NOAA.
Figure 35. The NOAA GPS Water Vapor Demonstration Network, as of December 1998.
Figure 36. Photos of typical sites comprising the NOAA GPS Water Vapor Demonstration Network: (left) the NOAA Wind Profiler Network site at Platteville, Colorado; (center) the NOAA National Data Buoy Center site at Stennis, Mississippi; and (right) the Coast Guard and DOT Differential GPS site at Cape Canaveral, Florida.
Data from the growing network of GPS-IPW sites are routinely transferred to the Forecast Research Division (FRD) for analysis. The data were assimilated into parallel runs of the MAPS/RUC-2 for the first time this year. The analyses show a small but statistically significant positive influence of these data on forecast accuracy. Some reasons for the less significant impact can be attributed to the large number of conventional observations already available in the central United States, and the limited number of and sparsely spaced GPS stations. Nonetheless, some cases involving heavy precipitation show very positive results. Current studies suggest that relatively high density and frequent water vapor observations assimilated into state-of-the art numerical weather prediction models in near real time will result in much improved mesoscale forecasts.
A goal was established in 1998 to deploy a 200-station GPS Water Vapor Demonstration Network (Figure 37) to facilitate the analysis of the effect of these data on quantitative precipitation forecasts. To this end, the division is pursuing a cooperative agreement with the Department of Transportation (DOT) to place surface meteorological sensors at Nationwide Differential GPS (NDGPS) sites as they are deployed within the next few years. A cooperative effort between DOT and NOAA to assess the use of NDGPS for improved weather forecasting was mandated by Congress as part of the GDGPS funding authorization.
This past year afforded us the first two opportunities to make continuous water vapor observations of landfalling severe weather events. The first opportunity occurred in late September, when Hurricane Georges came ashore between Stennis Space Center, Mississippi, and Mobile Point, Alabama (MOB1). Figure 38 shows the location of the GPS water vapor observing systems at the National Data Buoy Center (at Stennis) and the Coast Guard (at Mobile Point) in conjunction to the eye of Hurricane Georges. Figure 39 shows the time series of total column (integrated) precipitable water vapor and surface pressure during the event, from 26 September – 1 October 1998.
Figure 37. Configuration of a prospective 200-station GPS Water Vapor Demonstration Network planned for deployment within the next several years.
Figure 38. Location of GPS water vapor observing systems at the NOAA National Data Buoy Center (NDBC), Stennis Space Center, Mississippi, and at the Coast Guard, Mobile Point, Alabama (MOB1), in conjunction to the eye of Hurricane Georges at 2145 UTC on 27 September 1998.
Figure 39. Integrated precipitable water vapor observations from GPS and surface pressure observations (26 September – 1 October 1998) at the National Data Buoy Center (NDBC) and the Coast Guard (MOB1) during landfall of Hurricane Georges.
The second opportunity occurred when Tropical Storm Mitch exited the Gulf of Mexico by way of the Florida Peninsula in early November. Figure 40 shows the locations where these observations were made: Egmont Key (EKY1) near Tampa and the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station (CCV3). Figure 41 shows the time series of water vapor and pressure during the passage of Tropical Storm Mitch, from 1 – 9 November 1998. Note the rapid drying on 4 and 5 November 1998 as the storm moved eastward across Florida.
After four years of operation, GPS-IPW system reliability remains high. Only four major failures occurred in 1998, three of which were caused by lightning. Statistics on data availability from the NPN, other NOAA, and other agency systems are comparable, exceeding 95% for GPS observations and 92% for surface meteorological observations.
Figure 40. Location of GPS water vapor observing systems at Egmont Key, Florida (EKY1) and Cape Canaveral, Florida (CCV3) during the landfall and exit of Tropical Storm Mitch, 1 – 9 November 1998.
Figure 41. Time series of integrated precipitable water vapor from GPS and surface pressure observations at Egmont Key, Florida (EKY1) and Cape Canaveral, Florida (CCV3) during the passage of Tropical Storm Mitch.
Alaska Profiler Network
Division staff and Lockheed Martin engineers completed the construction of the three Alaska profiler sites, at Talkeetna, Glennallen, and Central (Figure 42a, b, and c). The sites were equipped with GPS precipitable water vapor systems, surface meteorological sensors, as well as FTS-2000 data communications.
The Glennallen profiler antenna structure experienced some movement due to permafrost. The contractor hired to correct the problem added fill material and installed adjustable metal plates to the concrete piers, which will allow up to 12 inches of height adjustment. If further movement occurs, the antenna structure can be leveled again.
The sites became operational last fall, but later experienced problems with the power amplifier and the antenna power dividers. Lockheed Martin is reworking these instruments, and the systems at all three sites will be tested before they are brought online.
Figure 42. Completed profiler sites in the Alaska Profiler Network.
a) 449-MHz profiler at Talkeetna,
b) 449-MHz profiler at Glennallen, and
c) 449-MHz profiler at Central. All sites are also equipped with GPS precipitable water vapor systems, surface meteorological sensors, and FTS-2000 data communications.
The Demonstration Division and ETL staff worked closely with Lockheed Martin on technical and scheduling issues related to reworking the power amplifiers and antennas. Biweekly conferences were held to monitor progress and address technical issues, and several trips were made to the profiler sites. Substantial progress was made on the engineering drawings and documentation for the power amplifiers and antennas.
Staff from the office of the Environmental Research Laboratories (ERL) provided both internal and formal reviews of the draft Upgrade Study, which defines the transition path of the new 449 MHz profiler system to the next generation national profiler network.
Boundary Layer Profilers
A Boundary Layer Profiler Hub processing system has been under development at the PCC for several years. The system includes the basic capabilities required to ingest BLP wind and temperature data, apply automated quality control (QC), monitor the quality of the data, and distribute products in real time. A key feature of the system is the ability to combine data from disparate radars into homogeneous products. It also allows for the rapid addition of new sites as quickly as arrangements can be made with individual agencies providing the data.
The automated QC algorithms used for the NOAA Profiler Network wind and temperature data were adapted and extended for use with the BLP data. Procedures used to subjectively monitor the quality and reliability of NPN communications and data were also adapted for the BLPs. Real-time data are acquired from a total of 25 BLP profilers (Figure 43). The input data arrive via the Internet or dial-up communications. Input formats include several versions of the two different formats used by the BLPs. Once the data are ingested by the BLP Hub, however, they are converted to a single format. All products produced inside the BLP Hub and distributed elsewhere are treated as uniform "network" products. The data are being distributed to FSL users, and have been incorporated in the Mesoscale Analysis and Prediction System (MAPS) and Local Analysis and Prediction System (LAPS) data assimilation systems. BLP data are also available through the Demonstration Division Web homepage.
Figure 43. Boundary Layer Profiler sites providing real-time data to the
Boulder Profiler Control Center.
NOAA Profiler Network
During Fiscal Year 1999, the Demonstration Division will continue to operate and maintain the NPN, improve the quality and quantity of data for operations and research, and constantly monitor the performance of the profiler network. However, during the year some significant changes will occur. In the spring, all computer and communications equipment will be relocated from FSL's present facility (3100 Marine St., Boulder) to the new NOAA building (325 Broadway, Boulder). Staff will thoroughly plan and carefully sequence this move to prevent interruption of the flow of profiler data and GPS precipitable water vapor data to the National Weather Service and other organizations. The plan is to have a fully operational facility by the end of the move week.
After operations have stabilized at the new location, staff will start an upgrade and modernization process for the Boulder Profiler Hub computer. The software will be redesigned to utilize techniques suited for the 21st century, including replacement of the division's obsolete microVAX computers.
NOAA has designated the NPN as a "mission critical" system in its plan to deal with the Y2K issue. Software at the profiler sites will be replaced by a Y2K- compliant version. The hub software will be reviewed and several end-to-end tests will be performed in accordance with a specified test plan. All subcomponents of the system will be either modified or declared Y2K-compliant by the vendor, and if problems occur, remedial measures will be taken to ensure compliance with an existing contingency plan.
In the spring of 1999, two wind profiler sites will become part of the NOAA Profiler Network. One is the 404-MHz profiler site near Wolcott, Indiana; it is entirely equivalent to the other NPN sites in the central United States. The other is the 449-MHz profiler site near the Syracuse, New York airport; this NOAA-owned site (to be operated by Lockheed Martin) will be used as a test bed for the NPN. The data generated by these two sites will be sent to the Boulder Profiler Hub to be quality controlled and made available to the vast number of users through the normal data distribution channels.
Later in the year, five modernized data processors for the 404-MHz wind profilers will be purchased to completely replace existing equipment. The new data processors will allow improvements in the signal processing and quality control of processed data at the remote profiler sites. This will result in improved estimates of the velocity spectra and better estimates of the first three spectral moments. Improved moment estimates along with RASS temperature profiles can be used to derive humidity profiles.
GPS Water Vapor Demonstration Network
The GPS and surface meteorological sensors will be installed at the remaining NPN sites, including the new 449-MHz profiler site at Syracuse, New York.
Approval to extend the agreement with the Coast Guard will permit installation of GPS Surface Observing System (GSOS) packages at the remaining "maritime" Differential GPS sites. With funding approval, an additional ten Coast Guard DGPS sites will be added to the GPS Water Vapor Demonstration Network during 1999. Also, upon completion of the agreement with DOT to install GSOS packages at the national DGPS sites, and with funding approval, it will be possible to install 16 GSOS packages at these sites.
A GPS-IPW system will be installed at the NWS Blacksburg, Virginia, Forecast Office in cooperation with the NWS Science and Operations Officer and staff at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute. This system will be used to investigate the use of GPS-IPW data for improved hydrologic forecasting.
The data being acquired by the GPS-IPW systems at the three NPN sites in Alaska will provide an opportunity to observe and document the atmospheric water vapor transition for the first time as the Arctic warms in the spring.
The GPS Data Acquisition and Processing System (G-DAPS), developed by the division staff, will move from Unix workstations to personal computers. This change will result in significantly lower data processing costs, higher performance, and more flexibility as the GPS Water Vapor Demonstration Network expands.
A significant goal is expected to be reached in 1999: the availability of accurate real-time GPS satellite orbits. The division remains committed to supporting its university collaborators in their efforts to bring real-time GPS-IPW data to NOAA centers and researchers.
Alaska Profiler Network
The delay of routine operations at the three 449-MHz profiler sites in Alaska was related to reliability problems with the power amplifiers and the antennas. Short-term, preliminary operation at half power levels at these sites indicated that the siting and orientation were satisfactory, and that the data should be free of ground clutter and other interference. Lockheed Martin (the supplier of the power amplifiers and the antennas) has undertaken an engineering study to determine the problems and solutions, and will take the necessary steps to make sure that the Alaska profilers are fully operational by the end of 1999. Division staff will monitor their progress and provide testing and evaluation to ensure that the delivered equipment is suitable for continuous operation in Alaska, and that the profilers meet all requirements for operating under a Stage 4 (primary) frequency allocation.
Boundary Layer Profilers
Staff will continue to operate the BLP Hub and to use it to acquire, quality control, and distribute BLP data to users via the Web. In the past, some users have requested that data be available in textual form rather than in the graphical form presently used on the Web. (The numerical form is more useful for modeling.) In early 1999 all products will be available on the Web in textual and numerical form to meet all user requests.
New Web products to be released during 1999 include Skew-T, hodograph, and plan view displays. Most of these new products will take advantage of Java client-server technology. Raw data and quality control information from both BLP and NPN profilers will be made available in textual format. A zooming map of the United States that will show the status of NPN profilers will be added to the Demonstration Division Website as an interface to all division products. The addition of the time animation of many of these Web products will enhance their utility for meteorologists and other users. Another product under development is a given level of wind or temperature information presented on a time-animated, zooming map. Static images for users who are not Java-enabled will continue to be produced. Other planned improvements include additional displays and availability of raw data from profilers and other collocated instruments. (Figure 44 shows an example of the types of NPN information currently available on the Web.)
44. An Example of NOAA Profiler Network information available on the Demonstration Division's Website.