NRL Passive Microwave Products Available for N-AWIPS: Tropical Depression Aletta

Tropical Depression Aletta is slowly churning through the eastern Pacific, currently located southwest of Baja California in the Eastern Pacific.  As of 0800 PDT, the latest forecast advisory estimates peak winds of 35 mph and the storm is expected to weaken.  However, the presence of the storm is a great opportunity to feature the results of a collaboration between the Naval Research Laboratory and the SPoRT Center that has facilitated the integration of NRL passive microwave products into the N-AWIPS visualization system (which is based upon GEMPAK capabilities).  Below are some comparisons between graphics provided by the NRL Tropical Cyclones page.  SPoRT has developed display capabilities for NRL single channel and multispectral (RGB) passive microwave products along with an estimate of the observing time based upon the satellite orbit.  These images were obtained from the DMSP F-17, although data from the full constellation of DMSP satellites and NASA’s Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) are also available.  Since these satellites have slightly different orbits, each snapshot of the storm is provided to SPoRT by NRL, and data are processed for display in N-AWIPS and distributed to partnering NCEP locations.

Low frequency (37 GHz) passive microwave RGB composite of Aletta at approximately 1305 UTC, based upon observations form DMSP F-17.

Equivalent to image above, produced by SPoRT from NRL data and configured for display in N-AWIPS (GEMPAK) for dissemination to partnering NCEP Centers.

High frequency (87-91 GHz) image of Aletta provided by the NRL Tropical Cyclones page.

Equivalent image processed by SPoRT for dissemination in N-AWIPS.


Although the zoom factor is slightly different between the NRL image and the N-AWIPS examples, the display of the data in N-AWIPS will allow forecasters to have greater control in manipulating the imagery and collocating satellite observations with other analyses available within their local systems.

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