GSD/CIRA Arlene Laing co-authors foundational handbook about weather forecasting in West Africa

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Arlene Laing contributed to this comprehensive new book about West African weather systems.

February 1, 2018

“Meteorology of Tropical West Africa: The Forecasters’ Handbook” is a comprehensive new book that documents scientific knowledge about West African weather systems and summarizes the principles and practice of operational weather prediction. GSD and CIRA scientist Dr. Arlene Laing was lead-author for the chapter on Remote Sensing and served on the international editorial team coordinated by the University of Leeds.

Tropical West Africa has very sparse surface and upper air observations, and very few radars. "Remote sensing offers remarkable possibilities for the analysis of weather patterns over tropical Africa,” says Laing. “On a continent where the ground‐based observing networks have substantial problems, the spatial and temporal coverage provided by satellite data has, over recent decades, transformed the level of information available to a forecaster."

This book is the first to document modern weather forecasting science for a specific region of the world and is the culmination of 15 years of international research. The book’s science background, operational methods, and case studies in text and online will improve the ability of the National Meteorological and Hydrological services to deliver accurate hazard information for risk assessments, prevention, response, and recovery. 

“Meteorology of Tropical West Africa: The Forecasters’ Handbook” was recently awarded the 2017 Atmospheric Science Librarians International Choice Award at the 2018 Annual AMS Meeting in Austin, Texas for “bringing together the science of climate, weather and forecasting that many will reference as they work in and with this important geographical area.”

For more information contact: Susan Cobb 303-497-5093