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24-Aug-05 | Aqua tells the future

NASA and NOAA have announced a “major advancement” in weather forecasting thanks to experimental data provided by the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument aboard Aqua (Delta 291). “They found incorporating AIRS data into numerical weather prediction models improves the accuracy range of experimental six-day Northern Hemisphere weather forecasts by up to six hours, a four percent increase.” While this may not sound like much, the director of the Joint Center for Satellite Data Assimilation (JCSDA) in Camp Springs, Maryland, where the research was conducted, claims this level of improvement “normally takes several years to achieve.” (24-Aug-05 NASA Press Release)

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