The Modernization Division produces functional designs or working prototypes of techniques, workstations, and systems that may be implemented into National Weather Service (NWS), or other agency, operations up to a decade later. The process includes selecting, tailoring, and implementing advanced techniques and devices produced by the research and development community, industry, or elsewhere. Developments are state of the art and continually evolve commensurate with new technological advances.
The modernization of NWS operations involves the development of a new radar system, an automated surface observing system, a new series of Geostationary satellites and products, and a communications and forecaster workstation system, the Advanced Weather Interactive Processing System (AWIPS). FSL has been participating for years in risk reduction activities to help the NWS meet its goals in the development and deployment of AWIPS. FSL has been testing a series of forecaster workstations at the Denver and Norman Weather Service Forecast Offices (WSFOs). The Denver AWIPS Risk Reduction and Requirements Evaluation (DARE) system and the Pre-AWIPS system in Norman, Oklahoma, used by WSFO staff were replaced by AWIPS two years ago.
The Modernization Division comprises three branches:
Enhanced Forecaster Tools Branch (AWIPS Forecast Preparation System)
Advanced Development Branch (AWIPS system evaluation and enhancement).