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Accelerating the transition of research into operations


To help accelerate the transition of research into operational climate models, products, and services, NOAA’s Modeling, Analysis, Predictions, and Projections (MAPP) program—in partnership with the NWS STI Modeling Program Division; the NOAA National Environmental Satellite, Data, Information, and Service, the Office of Naval Research; and NASA’s Modeling, Analysis, and Predictions Program—is funding 14 new two year projects. The competitively funded projects will receive $2.9 million in grants and $2.54 million in other awards (for a total of $5.44 million). Through these 14 new projects, MAPP will help advance NOAA’s operational capabilities for climate monitoring and prediction by accelerating the transition of research into operational climate systems, products, and services.

NOAA is charged with supporting our Nation’s economic vitality and protecting lives and resources. Through the operational climate monitoring products and predictions of the National Weather Service/National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP), NOAA aims to provide the public with critical information about environmental conditions. Such predictive information focuses on precipitation, temperature, tropical hazards, drought, and other phenomenon that impact the nation. MAPP and NCEP work to  develop prediction capabilities covering timescales from a few weeks to several seasons ahead to help society better prepare for improved resiliency.

In partnership with NCEP, the MAPP program, within NOAA’s Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research (OAR), supports the NOAA Climate Test Bed (CTB). The CTB facilitates the orderly transition of research findings and capabilities into NOAA’s operational climate monitoring and prediction products and services through evaluation, development, and testing. This OAR-NWS partnership demonstrates the potential for scientific discoveries and development by  NOAA labs and the external community to improve life-saving information provided to the public by NOAA operational centers. Supporting the transition of climate research to climate forecast operations will help advance the prediction of climate extremes including heat waves, extreme precipitation, floods, and droughts in support of the development of information systems such as the National Integrated Drought Information System (NIDIS) and the National Integrated Heat Health Information System (NIHHIS).

To accelerate the transition of new tools and techniques from the climate research community to improve the accuracy and reliability of NOAA operational products and services, the 14 competitively-selected MAPP-funded projects will demonstrate the performance of modeling components, experimental prediction methodologies, and multi-model prediction systems resulting in improved and new operational capabilities.
The 14 new projects1 to be funded by the MAPP Program and in 2016 are:

  • “Operational Transition of Soil Moisture and Snow Data Assimilation in the North American Land Data Assimilation System (NLDAS),” PI: Christa Peters-Lidard (NASA GSFC); co-PIs: Youlong Xia, Mike Ek, and Jiarui Dong (NCEP EMC); David Mocko and Sujay Kumar (NASA GSFC)
  • “An NCEP Global Ensemble Forecast System for Monthly Forecasts,” PI: Yuejian Zhu (NCEP EMC), co-PIs: Malaquias Pena, Wei Li, Hong Guan, and Xiaqiong Zhou (NCEP EMC)
  • “Development of a Monitoring and Prediction System for Flash Droughts over the United States,” PI: Dennis Lettenmaier (UCLA); co-PI: Kingtse Mo (NCEP CPC)
  • “Estimating the Subseasonal Forecast Skill in the NASA GEOS-5 System with a Focus on the Madden Julian Oscillation and the Land Surface Memory Feedback Processes,” PI: Deepthi Achuthavarier (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center/Universities Space Research Program), co-PIs: Randal Koster and Jelena Marshak (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center)
  • “Sub-seasonal Prediction with CCSM4,” PI: Ben Kirtman (University of Miami – RSMAS); co-PIs: Kathy Pegion (George Mason University), Rong Fu (University of Texas, Austin)
  • “NMME Sub-seasonal to Seasonal Climate Products for Hydrology and Water Management,” PI: Andy Wood (NCAR); co-PIs: Rajagopalan Balaji (UC Boulder), Peitao Peng (NCEP CPC), Yu Zhang (NOAA National Water Center)
  • “Developing a Real-Time Multi-Model Sub-Seasonal Predictive Capacity,” PI: Ben Kirtman (University of Miami – RSMAS); co-PIs: Kathy Pegion (George Mason University), Andy Robertson (Columbia University IRI), Robert Burgman (Florida International University), Hai Lin (Environment Canada), Jon Gottschalck (NCEP CPC), Dan Collins (NCEP CPC)
  • “Increasing Subseasonal-to-Seasonal (S2S) Forecast Skill through Climate Teleconnections: A Hybrid Statistical-Dynamical Prediction System,” PI: Dan Collins (NCEP CPC), co-PI: Qin Zhang (NCEP CPC)
  • “Development of Ensemble-based Sea Ice Analysis and Forecasting in the Climate Forecast System,” PI: Jim Carton (University of Maryland); co-PIs: Robert Grumbine and Suranjana Saha (NCEP EMC), Steve Penny (University of Maryland)
  • “Upgrading the CPC Operational Ocean Monitoring to an Eddy-permitting Global Ocean Analysis Using the Hybrid Global Ocean Data Assimilation System as a Replacement for GODAS,” PI: Stephen Penny (University of Maryland); co-PI: Yan Xue (NCEP CPC), David Behrenger (NCEP EMC), Jim Carton (University of Maryland)
  • “Seasonal Climate Forecasting Applied to Wildland Fire Management in Alaska,” PI: Uma Bhatt (University of Alaska, Fairbanks), co-PIs: Peter Bieniek and Alison York (University of Alaska, Fairbanks), Peitao Peng (NCEP CPC)
  • “Development Toward NCEP’s Fully-coupled Global Forecast and Data Assimilation System: A coupled Wave – Ocean System,” PI: Stephen Griffies (NOAA GFDL); co-PIs: Robert Hallberg and Alistair Adcroft (NOAA GFDL), Arun Chawla and Suranjana Saha (NCEP EMC)
  • “The Inclusion of Sub-seasonal to Seasonal Predictions of the Navy’s Earth System Model in the North American Multi-Model Ensemble (NMME),” PI: Neil Barton (Naval Research Laboratory Monterey); co-PI: Joseph Metzger (Naval Research Laboratory Stennis)
  • “A Subseasonal Excessive Heat Outlook System for CPC’s Global Tropics Hazards and Benefits Outlook (GTH),” PI: Augustin Vintzileos (University of Maryland); co-PI: Stephen Baxter (NCEP CPC)
    1At the time of publication, all awards may not have been accepted by recipient institutions

MAPP is a program in the Climate Program Office, within NOAA’s Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research, that supports research to advance climate modeling technologies to improve the simulation and understanding of climate variability, predictions and projections of the climate system, and the infrastructure necessary to make those advances.  Learn more about MAPP’s funding opportunities.

For a full list of CPO’s grants and awards for 2015, visit:
NOAA’s Climate Program Office helps improve understanding of climate variability and change in order to enhance society’s ability to plan and respond. NOAA provides science, data, and information that Americans want and need to understand how climate conditions are changing. Without NOAA’s long-term climate observing, monitoring, research, and modeling capabilities we couldn’t quantify where and how climate conditions have changed, nor could we predict where and how they’re likely to change.

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