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THE PREMIER APPROACH: NOAA’s Upgraded Computer Model Data

NOAA (National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration) announced in March 2021 that a major upgrade has been made to the American Global Forecast System model (GFS), one of the main computer models used to predict weather across USA and the world for the past several years.

WHY DOES THIS MATTER TO THE GENERAL AVIATION WEATHER COMMUNITY AND METEOROLOGISTS?

The upgrade will ingest more data from weather satellites and aircraft, thus allowing for a better representation of surface and upper-level features, including the jet stream.

  • The atmosphere will now be simulated as having 127 vertical slices rather than just 64.
  • The horizontal resolution is now down to 10km vs the current 13km. 

EXAMPLE

The new version has been running in parallel since 2018 with great success and accuracy, as illustrated below, which shows how the new version 16 outperformed the older version 15 for Hurricane Dorian:

Flight Pro International’s meteorologists and flight planners have access to this upgraded model data, and it is incorporated daily in the outlooks and flight briefs we produce. The upgrade allows for better output from our flight planning engine, including more accurate burns and enroute times. It will also allow our meteorologists to better predict tropical cyclones, severe weather episodes, snowfall location and intensity with much higher accuracy and timeliness than before.

We support your every move, while continually striving to take the worry out of your global trip planning. Let us do the heavy lifting!

If you have any questions, the Global Trip Support (GTS) team at Flight Pro International has you covered.

FLY HIGH, FLY FAR!

Written by: Brad Asselin, Director, Weather & Flight Planning Services

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