The Mesoscale Forecasting Process: Applying the Next Generation Mesoscale Forecast
AIR FORCE WEATHER AGENCY OFFUTT AFB NE
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The weather forecast effort has progressed a long way past its embryonic stage of the barotropic forecast. Both computer power and our knowledge of atmospheric processes have increased substantially over the years, allowing for the classification of many weather phenomena into scales, including the globalhemispheric scale, the synoptic scale, the mesoscale, and the microscale. These scales represent the cascade of energy that occurs in the atmosphere, with hemispheric features providing energy for the synoptic scale, synoptic features providing energy for the mesoscale, and so forth. Many observation and modeling tools exist to aid the forecaster along the way, including RAOB soundings, satellite imagery, wind profiler data, radar data, lightning data, and model data, and all are useful in mesoscale forecasting. When performing a mesoscale forecast, however, it is prudent to use a mesoscale model, such as the Air Force Weather Agencys AFWA Weather Research and Forecasting WRF model.
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