The SPoRT program is one of many organizations participating in the GOES-R Proving Ground to help prepare the meteorological community for the capabilities that will be available aboard GOES-R when it launches in 2015. Part of this work is to look for current observation capabilities that mirror what GOES-R will have. The MODIS instruments aboard the Aqua and Terra satellites have similar resolution and spectral channels to the planned ABI (Advanced Baseline Imager) instrument. Therefore, it is an excellent demonstration of future capabilities. However, the MODIS instruments are aboard polar orbiting satellites, meaning that unlike conventional geostationary GOES imagery swaths, data are available only when MODIS passes overhead. This creates poor temporal resolution that is unsuitable for many forecasters who prefer the ability to loop satellite data.
To address this issue in SPoRT’s Proving Ground activities, SPoRT personnel took existing GOES data, available at 30 minute intervals, and embedded the higher resolution MODIS swaths into the GOES data whenever MODIS was available. The result, shown in the figure below, creates a product available at a high enough temporal resolution to allow for animated loops and allows forecasters better access to MODIS data as it is no longer presented as an isolated snapshot. With the initial demonstration, SPoRT saw that this process could be applied to the current MODIS product suite now to enhance the utility of the MODIS data for all of our partners and not just with the Proving Ground activities. Efforts are now underway to provide this hybrid product in AWIPS to our National Weather Service partners as well as within SPoRT’s AWIPS II demonstration work.