Impact of atmospheric infrared sounder observations on weather forecasts



Experimental weather forecasts at the Joint Center for Satellite Data Assimilation (JCSDA) using Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) radiance observations indicate significant improvements in global forecast skill compared with the operational system without AIRS data. The improvement in forecast skill at six days is equivalent to gaining an extension of forecast capability of several hours.

This magnitude of improvement is quite significant when compared with the rate of general forecast improvement over the last decade. A several hour increase in forecast range at five or six days normally takes several years to achieve at operational weather centers.