GERMANTOWN, Md.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Earth Networks today announced that it has been awarded a five-year, $2.5 million contract by The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Weather Service (NWS). Under the contract, NWS forecasters will leverage Earth Networks’ first-of-its-kind Total Lightning Network® and advanced lightning data to more rapidly identify severe weather, improve severe weather warning lead times, enhance forecaster situational awareness, and advance research toward innovative forecasting tools.
With over 1,500 sensors in more than 90 countries, Earth Networks Total Lightning Network is the most extensive and technologically-advanced lightning network in the world. Its ability to monitor in-cloud lightning enables forecasters to generate faster, localized storm alerts and warn of other forms of severe weather such as tornadoes, downbursts and hail – enabling unique weather intelligence compared to other lightning networks.
Lightning data are fundamental to the real-time identification of thunderstorm occurrence, location, coverage, intensity and trends. Earth Networks Total Lightning Network complements NOAA weather data from the recently launched GOES-16 weather satellite, as its ground-based network delivers increased resolution and location accuracy (down to 100 meters vs. 8 kilometers for space-based sensors), flash type classification (cloud-to-ground vs. in-cloud) and the unique ability to measure polarity and amplitude which characterize lightning intensity.
Earth Networks’ total lightning data will be used across NOAA:
- By forecasters to more quickly identify and track convective weather (thunderstorms) events from initiation to cessation
- As a primary driver of improved severe weather warning lead times
- As a key input into multi-radar, multi-sensor derivative product algorithms for enhanced forecaster situational awareness
- For assimilation into numerical weather prediction models for enhanced model initialization and improved forecast guidance
- As an important input to advance research into new weather forecasting tools and techniques for various use cases, such as fire weather operations
“Lightning has long been viewed by meteorologists as a weather byproduct, but the data Earth Networks delivers possesses highly predictive properties and is now being used to forewarn of atmospheric events, improve citizen safety, as well as reduce organizational risk and improve operations,” said Bill Callahan, Vice President of Federal Programs, Earth Networks. “NOAA remains at the leading edge of exploring new ways to use lightning data for the benefit of this country’s citizens and economy. As a corporate partner, we are thrilled to continue participating, supporting and advancing these efforts toward establishment of a truly weather ready nation.”
In December, Earth Networks announced a significant expansion of the Earth Networks Global Lightning Network (ENGLN) – delivering unprecedented long-range global lightning detection capabilities for businesses and government to mitigate financial, operational and human risk. To help organizations better leverage this weather data, Earth Networks recently launched Sferic Maps and Sferic Mobile – advanced weather visualization, decision support and collaboration products that automate decisions surrounding severe weather situations and enable communication with their teams to prepare for disruptive events.
For more information on Earth Networks Total Lightning capabilities, visit http://www.earthnetworks.com.
About Earth Networks
Earth Networks has been Taking the Pulse of the Planet® for more than 20 years. We help organizations mitigate financial, operational and human risk by providing environmental intelligence from the world’s largest hyperlocal weather network. Schools, airports, sports teams, utilities and government agencies rely on our early warning solutions to safeguard lives, prepare for weather events and optimize operations. Companies across all industries use our weather data to automate decisions regarding risk management, business continuity and asset protection.