At the Open Technology Forum at Meteorological Technology World Expo 2023, Ruud Dirksen, head of the Global Reference Upper Air Network (GRUAN) Lead Centre at Deutscher Wetterdienst, and Frédéric Vogt, scientific collaborator at MeteoSwiss, revealed the results and conclusions from the WMO’s Upper Air Instrument Intercomparison 2022 (UAII2022).
Under the auspices of the WMO, Deutscher Wetterdienst (DWD), MeteoSwiss and a wider task team jointly conducted the UAII2022. Although the focus of the project was radiosonde systems, it also assessed surface-based remote sensing, satellite data and aircraft-based observations. The field campaign of UAII2022 took place in Lindenberg, Germany, from August 8 to September 14, 2022, with 10 participating radiosonde models and a suite of active and passive remote sensing instruments.
During the presentation, the audience learned about the importance of UAII2022 and its unique approach to assessing radiosondes. The speakers also explained how UAII2022 assessed upper air instruments, and presented the main results and conclusions of the project.
Ruud Dirksen said, “All in all, it’s been a very successful campaign. We’re very happy. Using the chosen approach – independent operators, GDPs, OSCAR, lab/field campaign, DVAS [data visualization and analysis software], open-source approach – worked out well.
“Most of the systems reviewed are fit for routine operation in terms of system maturity, user friendliness and data quality,” he continued. “All but one sonde met the breakthrough temperature requirements for NWP [numerical weather prediction] in all atmospheric layers. This was consistent with the laboratory results. Additionally, when we looked at humidity, two systems met the breakthrough requirements for NWP, which was also consistent with limitations observed during laboratory tests. Of course, the OSCAR requirements for climate monitoring were highly challenging to reach, especially for humidity.”
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