By Sid Nair
Anyone who has an interest in weather and who also wants to help the public might want to consider becoming a storm spotter. The SKYWARN program is managed by the National Weather Service as a way to protect the public by providing advance warnings and information about inclement weather. Storm spotters need to receive training by taking courses and participating in webinars. You'll learn about thunderstorms, storm structures, how to identify severe weather, how to report it, and basics about weather safety. Some storm spotters use weather stations installed in their homes or vehicles. These stations enable (tracking) of weather conditions such as wind speed and direction, humidity, rainfall, temperature, and barometric pressure. Monitoring these conditions makes it possible to predict weather and provide important data to the National Weather Service and local meteorologists. Those spotters who also engage in storm-chasing activities often take their systems with them as they drive and monitor storm progress. Some weather reports may also include GPS coordinates and photos called in or sent via social media pages maintained by local or regional storm-chaser organizations.
- SKYWARN Storm Spotter Program: The National Weather Service created the SKYWARN Storm Spotter Program to improve its ability to warn the public about inclement weather.
- What Is SKYWARN? Developed in the 1960s, SKYWARN is a program with trained weather spotters who report on severe weather conditions.
- How to Become an Official Storm Spotter: More than 290,000 people volunteer as weather spotters, reporting on weather conditions as they occur.
- Using GPS to Monitor a Hurricane: GPS enables government entities to predict storms and release accurate warnings about a storm's path and severity.
- Hurricane Watch: How Satellites Track Huge Storms From Space: Satellites capture data from space to devise forecasts of hurricanes and other storms.
- Space Weather and GPS Systems: When conditions are calm, single-frequency GPS systems can provide accurate position information, but errors may occur during severe space weather.
- GPS Technology Improves Weather Forecasting: Computer forecasting models use millions of current weather observations to generate weather forecasts.
- Hurricane-Tracking Microsatellites Harness GPS Signals: NASA has a new fleet of hurricane-observing satellites capable of tracking various components of hurricanes, including surface winds, inner rain bands, and precipitation.
- How to Be a Storm Spotter: One thing storm spotters learn about is clouds because clouds are often a first clue about inclement weather approaching.
- How to Become a Weather Spotter: Storm spotter training involves learning how to recognize rotation in a cloud base, which may happen in advance of a funnel cloud forming.
- GPS Technology Improves Weather Forecasting: Forecasting has become more accurate thanks to improved temperature fields and calibration of satellite readings.
- Using GPS for Better Weather Prediction: Water vapor in the atmosphere can cause GPS signal delays, which can affect forecasting.
- GPS Satellites Could Help Predict the Weather: Monitoring the atmospheric boundary layer with GPS helps improve weather prediction.
- Better Forecasts Through GPS: GPS tracking also enables scientists to monitor climate change.
- A Quiet Revolution in Weather Forecasting: Microsatellites are offering new advances for weather sensing due to their smaller size and faster speeds.
- Receivers Gather Data for Climate, Weather Prediction: Data collected via GPS can be used for producing weather models and weather forecasts.
- GPS Improves Hurricane Forecasting for CYGNSS: A group of microsatellites can work more efficiently at a lower cost, improving forecast accuracy for hurricanes.
- Space Weather Effects on GPS: Using dual-frequency GPS receivers may compensate for delays that occur due to ionosphere disturbances.
- Weather Forecasting Lesson: This lesson presents the history of weather prediction as well as information about modern weather forecasting.
- Our Weather Prediction Models Keep Getting Better, and Hurricane Irma Is the Proof: Accuracy of prediction of recent hurricanes points to better prediction capabilities.
- Innovations and New Technology for Improved Weather Services: Expanded formats for forecasts are enabling more detail and accuracy.
- How Do Satellites Track Weather and Climate Change? The first weather satellites date back to the 1960s, enabling weather forecasts to begin extending out multiple days into the future.