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Using GOES Rapid Scan Operations (RSO) Imagery in AWIPS


B. Motta, A. Mostek, J. Weaver,
D. Bikos, K. Schrab, K. Waters

  1. Introduction
    This is a basic course.
    This session will focus on how to obtain GOES RSO data and utilize it in AWIPS to assist with the forecast decision-making process.

    The objective of this training session is to:
    – Describe the GOES RSO capability
    – Identify conditions for calling an RSO
    – Use RSO effectively
  2. Prerequisites
    Prior to attending this RSO session, you should review the following materials:
    – VISIT GOES FAQ page
  3. Training session options:
    a.) The interactive VISITview training session. (To be used with a VISIT instructor leading the session). Click here to signup for teletraining. The session will last 60 minutes. This teletraining session uses the VISITview software, where Windows PC (with 64 MB RAM or greater) with an internet connection is needed.

    b.) Web-based training sessions – a “stand-alone” version viewed via a web browser, with embedded talking points included. This lesson version may be viewed at any time. These slides are ideal for printing from the web browser, just print preview first to choose portrait or landscape mode. Best viewed with Internet Explorer or Netscape (prior to version 6.)

    c.)Web-based Visitview session – This version uses the VISITview software within a Web browser, may be viewed at any time. It retains all the functionality of the VISITview software which you see in a “live” teletraining session. The talking points are not included in this lesson version, but can be viewed in a separate Web browser (or printed out beforehand).

    d.) local Visitview session – This is the same version of the lesson used in a “live” VISITview teletraining session, but no connection is made to an external VISITview server. You may download the file off this page and go through the lesson on your own in “local mode” by starting the “visitlocal.bat” file. Talking points are not included in this lesson version, but can be viewed in a separate Web browser ( or printed out beforehand).
  4. References/Additional Links
  5. Train the trainer

4) References/Additional Links

5) Train the trainer
Talking points – these may be used by local offices to explain important points in the session.

Page #TitleComments
1Using GOES RSO in AWIPSWelcome-Introduction-Credits
2Why ?Motivation for the training.  AWIPS GOES imagery actually gets there in ~8 minutes in RSO….fastest ever.
3ObjectivesAsk each office if they’ve ever called a RSO session.  Some offices thought RSO was only for severe convective weather.
4BenefitsPrestorm & warning environments…. May 3rd (’99) – forecasters looking at each sat image for initiation…but forgot to call RSO.
5Importance of RSO“There are some significant meteorological events that occur on timescales less than 10 minutes.”
6GOES-East Routine ModeCovers larger satellite sector domains than RSO.
7GOES-East Actual Routine Sectors
8GOES-East Rapid Scan ModeShowtext link goes to NOAASIS page – GOES Dissemination Schedule.
9GOES-West Routine ModeNote the schedule offset from GOES-East.
10GOES-West Actual Routine Sectors 
11GOES-West Rapid Scan ModeLink goes to NOAASIS page – GOES Dissemination Schedule.
12GOES-East Volcano SectorMonitor ash clouds as aviation hazards.
13GOES-West Hawaii RSO Sector Alaska RSO sector is also available.
14RSO POCsPlan to autotrigger under review at NCEP. One impact of calling RSO is the 00Z winds model assimilation.
15GOES RSO Start TimesRSO request- time until activation and start times of each satellite.
16RSO Delivery TimesHow long does it take the RSO imagery to get to your AWIPS and get displayed?  Mention GOES image time is when the first line begins scanning.
17RSO and other WFOs All offices ingesting data from a particular GOES get RSO when it is called for that satellite.  More images means shorter loop sequences unless the number of frames are increased. Link goes to VISIT GOES FAQ page
18AWIPS and RSOThis directory on AWIPS tells you which satellite is selected as your primary GOES ingest. Ask any offices that could use either if they know which one is selected.
19AWIPS RSO ProductsAWIPS Satellite products are available for CONUS and smaller domains in RSO.
20AWIPS RSO Derived Products Locally derived satellite products (eg. fog product) also available in RSO
21Mesoscale changes with Synoptic SystemsRSO Applications
22Departing Nor’easter IR-radar 25 Feb 99Place arrow initially on the southern coast of Massachusetts. Snow dissipation along the western edge evident on IR imagery before radar. What features can you see ? A) Satellite imagery shows warming cloud top temperatures before dissipation is evident in the radar reflectivity B) Deformation ZoneC) Dissipation of snow in western half of region. D) Satellite shows warming cloud tops as precipitation is ending. E) Satellite offers extension of data beyond radar range. F) Low-level convection- SE NY/ SW CT snow band.
23Hurricane BretHurricane Bret Loop showing mature storm with well-developed eye while still over water. RSO called by SR HQ showed initial stages of eye formation (from Ken Waters).
24Mesoscale RSO ApplicationsSome phenomena that can be seen. Others ?
254-panel Great Lakes 14 Nov 95Point out use of other channels, use more than just visible imagery (especially at night…switch to fog/stratus product).  LES regional scale images are non-RSO.
26RSO Great Lakes Visible 14 Nov 95Lake-effect case that shows better continuity of features.  1) E. Huron Snowbands 2) IN/OH Cu/snow 3) Cloud field develops downwind      of snow field 4) Favorable shear profile over      Lake Huron for multiple bands 5) Mesoscale lows over the lakes 6) Snowcover in WI 7) Clouds over snow   Infer shear by snowband type: Single Band: < 30° of directional shear from the BL to 700mb Multiple Bands: 30-60° of directional shear from the BL to 700 mb Note – Greater than 60° of directional shear from the BL to 700 mb is detrimental for lake-effect snowband development  Cloud field develops beyond snow cover. Meso-low features over Lakes Superior and Michigan; radars seldom detect these shallow features.
2715-minute Visible – 8 April 1998 15- minute loop. Ask for description of features. A) Boundary in N. AL B) Regional scale cloud      cover(SE)/clear (NW) C) Organized convective lines D) Developing squall line NE MS E) Splitting storm NW GA F) Changes in Cu growth/coverage G) Boundaries and their motions
28RSO Southeast Loop – 8 April 1998Point out northward moving boundary that played a key role in the Birmingham tornado. Boundary also seen on radar, BHM prepared for this.  Noted that F5 started as boundary interacted with existing tornadic storm.
29IR Southeast Loop – 8 Apr 98 RSO IR imagery for 8 April 1998 tornado case. Show usefullness of IR imagery (Enhanced-V signature), keep the RSO going well into the night if conditions warrant. (Refer to Enhanced-V training) Ask if the Enhanced-V can be seen and what it’s implications are.
30Fade of Visible and IR4 – 8 Apr 98Show usefulness in AWIPS of being able to combine satellite imagery (also useful for radar). Show fader – fade, animate, rock. Examine appearance of boundary and cloud features in VIS and 10.7 um IR.
31Fade of Visible and IR2 – 8 Apr 98This is the VIS/3.9um fader.  Notice the similarities and detail in the lower (warmer) clouds. 3.9um is not affected by the water vapor attenuation at 10.7 um.
32Fade of the IR2 and IR4  8 Apr 98Use IR imagery at night to follow severe t-storms.  Can see low cloud information with enhanced IR imagery or derived products. IR-Cloud tops IR2/Fog-stratus- shows low clouds verus surface better than IR (10.7um)
3317 May 1996 1km Visible ImageryNebraska – dryline boundary with wave near location of storm initiation.   1) Draw CF from NE NE-Central NE 2) Possibility of a wave near Hastings
3417 May 1996 Initiation on Satellite and Radar Boundaries17 May 1996 case, Grand Island, Nebraska radar with remapped 1km visible imagery (AWIPS-like). Visible imagery shows the first boundary to the east is not as important as it may appear on radar alone, deeper clouds on the western line. Note “extension of radar-range information” in east boundary with more clouds to the south. A) These are 2 boundaries- not one (versus previous loop) B) There is not a wave on the CF (initially) C) Eastern-most boundary looks most intense on radar- but satellite shows no clouds D) Radar/satellite shows splitting storm  E) Use radar and satellite to compensate for the “cone of silence”
35Stormscale Applications
3617 May 1996 – Storm Splitting17 May 1996 case. Are 2 different overshooting tops observable ? Storm splitting is evident on visible imagery before radar reflectivity. 18 minutes before upper-level scan and 10 minutes before mid-level scan. These details evolve in short time frames. 
3731 May 1996 RSO and SRSO1) CO storm forms on Palmer Lake Divide and moves SE toward a convergence line. (Refer to LTO session for outflow boundary evolution) 2) Point out how quickly outflow/RFD develops from the supercell in eastern CO.  3) Orphan anvil travelling north dissipates.  (Apparently due to storm-scale subsidence) 4) Point out other storm’s outflow interaction N ans E of CO storm. Low cloud feature SE of CO storm at 224514 is associated with a 70kt storm outflow according to storm data. 5) Convergence of low cloud and flanking line results in F2 tornado within 5 minutes after the interaction (storm chase video).  6) Also note structure of overshooting tops – qualitative assessment of divergence and back building anvils.  7) Explain SRSO- can show important storm-scale features.
38Miscellaneous uses of RSO
39GOES Assessment Convective Initiation Feedback 29 March 1998 case. Development of a storm in Iowa along some boundary that moved into La Crosse CWA. Feeder bands in northeast Iowa with that storm. More stable stratiform region further north in Wisconsin. Watch for storms in the moist sector where more Cu is present.
40ARX RSO Visible Loop1) Draw WF, CF, Low, and DL 2) Eastern IA MCS forms- moves NE. SW view of storm shows “feeder bands” -a possible severe weather indicator. MCS moved across WF and storms dissipate. Imagery shows warm front position and weakening of feeder bands. 3) Warm-sector does not have homogeneous cloud cover 4) Storms initiate over Council Bluffs,  IA- then move into deeper moisture and develop further. 5) Triple-point storm initiation
41G/A RSO Use After Initiation
42Case study- RSO in Warning Decision MakingLink goes to the Cheyenne case, RSO used in warning decision making.
43Other examples of using GOES RSO by WFOsLink goes to Western Region RSO GOES Assessment – shows many examples.
442 September 98 Los Angeles radarNote thunderstorms along the higher terrain east of LA. A boundary extends from the storms on the high terrain towards Los Angeles. Later in the loop the storms develop near LA, the storms made the radars go down just after 22:30 UTC
452 September 98 IRThunderstorms developed on the high terrain initially, then dissipated as new storms developed in the Los Angeles area.
462 September 98 IR and Visible imageryAfter the initial activity southeast of LA weakens, new storms develop northwest of the city and form an outflow on their southeast flank (see arc cloud line in vis imagery). The storms are most intense near the intersecting boundaries on the north end of the arc cloud line. The WSR-88D’s went down during this time due to severe weather. An RSO was called DURING the event (and started after 00Z). Calling an RSO before the event would’ve showed the new thunderstorm development over Los Angeles associated with intersecting boundaries with better continuity while the radars were down.
472 September 98 Los Angeles radarRadar imagery after it came back online (the severe weather caused an outage). By the time the radar is back up the storms are weakening as they move towards the ocean.
48GOES Assessment Feedback
49RSO Conclusions I
50RSO Conclusions IILink goes to RSO student guide on VISIT homepage
51On-station Training Exercise
52About SRSO and AWIPS
53  Shows why not to view RSO imagery on the CONUS scale
  1. Content Developed/Updated
  2. Contact Information
    Dan Bikos (970) 491 3777