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Research Spending & Results

Award Detail

Doing Business As Name:Oklahoma State University
  • Jamey D Jacob
  • (405) 744-3208
  • Suzanne W Smith
  • Suxia Cui
  • Adam L Houston
  • Gijs de Boer
Award Date:07/20/2021
Estimated Total Award Amount: $ 99,946
Funds Obligated to Date: $ 99,946
  • FY 2021=$99,946
Start Date:09/01/2021
End Date:08/31/2022
Transaction Type:Grant
Awarding Agency Code:4900
Funding Agency Code:4900
CFDA Number:47.041
Primary Program Source:040100 NSF RESEARCH & RELATED ACTIVIT
Award Title or Description:Planning Grant: Engineering Research Center for Precision Meteorology (ERC-PM)
Federal Award ID Number:2124239
DUNS ID:049987720
Parent DUNS ID:049987720
Program:ERC-Eng Research Centers
Program Officer:
  • Mehdi Ferdowsi
  • (703) 292-5357

Awardee Location

Awardee Cong. District:03

Primary Place of Performance

Organization Name:Oklahoma State University
Cong. District:03

Abstract at Time of Award

The Planning Grants for Engineering Research Centers competition was run as a pilot solicitation within the ERC program. Planning grants are not required as part of the full ERC competition, but intended to build capacity among teams to plan for convergent, center-scale engineering research. As many people know from experience, weather forecasting is an imprecise science that relies on averaging results from many different predictions. Thus, forecasts are often inaccurate in the degree of prediction and miss the mark in important details of timing, location, or severity. Not uncommonly, the forecast is just plain wrong with sometimes disastrous consequences. While weather forecasts at the large scale have improved over the last few decades, accurate weather prediction at local scales is within our reach, but not possible without paradigm changes that will transform the weather enterprise and unlock solutions to many of our food, energy, transportation, and climate-triggered weather challenges. If successful, this initiative will have a broad range of benefits to the general public. Consider the following scenarios: Imagine if airports had reliable predictions of when icing will end, if a grower was assured that the wind-born fungus at a nearby farm would not drift into their fields, and if first responders knew of localized wind shifts governing wildfire spread or heavy rain in locations likely to be impacted by flooding. Consider annual gains from accurate local prediction for optimized wind farm production and solar energy output. Picture an aviation warning network for invisible wind shear and clear air turbulence at low altitudes. Imagine highly reliable autonomous air taxi and delivery networks enabled by microscale weather prediction in urban and rural settings. Consider the relief of advance warning for migraine sufferers and others with weather-induced health issues. Think of the possibility to alleviate disparities in severe weather warnings and associated emergency response using a mobile, flexible atmospheric observing system. These and other opportunities yet to be imagined will be possible with Precision Meteorology. Therefore, this team proposes a planning grant to evaluate a proposed Engineering Research Center for Precision Meteorology. Highly accurate, timely, local-scale weather prediction - Precision Meteorology - will enable solutions to issues that impact a broad array of problems impacting society, including food, energy, and climate related challenges. The key to improving accuracy of microscale meteorological models, and thus local prediction, is to couple increased in situ observations within the lower atmosphere, including the atmospheric boundary layer (ABL), with high-resolution numerical weather prediction (NWP) optimized to utilize these observations. A key enabling technology for increasing ABL observations includes Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS); emerging with proven value for sensing in the ABL and beyond, initiating a significant shift in the scientific foundations of meteorological observations. Optimizing the coupling between these measurements and numerical weather prediction to maximize impact requires convergent research among engineering, atmospheric science, data science, and social science. If successful, this center will achieve economic and societal impacts through data-enabled localized weather prediction offering significant lead-time, accuracy, and resolution improvements over current meteorological predictions. Through a comprehensive approach, we believe a Center for Precision Meteorology (CPM) will achieve this vision. This award reflects NSF's statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation's intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.

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