Includes Data from Vaisala’s NLDN and GLD360
Helsinki, Finland — Vaisala has won a five-year contract to supply real-time lightning data to the USA’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
The data will be used to generate more accurate short-term weather forecasting for use in aviation and aerospace operations in order to improve the safety of en-route flights and terminal areas.
The FAA relies on real-time lightning maps and individual lightning strike characteristics to closely monitor thunderstorm development, occurrence, location and paths in order to generate more accurate short-term weather forecasting for use in aviation and aerospace operations.
The FAA uses lightning data to increase aviation safety both en-route and in the terminal areas to aid in the efficient movement of aircraft and to determine if thunderstorms are occurring at, or in the vicinity of Automated Weather Observation System (AWOS),
Automated Surface Observing System (ASOS) and Automated Weather Sensor System (AWSS) observation sites. In addition, the FAA uses lightning data to support research and development efforts.
Under this contact, Vaisala will supply the FAA streaming, real-time cloud-to-ground lightning data covering the contiguous United States, the Caribbean, Alaska and Hawaii.
The FAA will receive data from the Vaisala National Lightning Detection Network (NLDN) and Global Lightning Data Set GLD360.
The NLDN is a precision lightning network, owned and operated by Vaisala.
Using a network of over 100 sensors in strategically placed locations around the U.S., the NLDN detects both cloud-to-ground and cloud lightning, delivering significant lightning accuracy with 70% fewer sensors.
GLD360 utilizes long-range lightning detection technology, and adds value to the FAA by providing additional data for the lower 48 states, as well as Alaska, Hawaii and the Caribbean.
The U.S. National Weather Service has also been using both NLDN and GLD360 data, stating that their Ocean Prediction Center and National Hurricane Center have benefited from using the lightning information to better forecast and research storm behavior.
The NLDN and GLD360 have been scientifically validated against rocket-triggered lightning, and detect both cloud-to-ground and in-cloud lightning data.
The FAA receives trusted information for weather forecasts and warnings, resulting in a safer national airspace system, as well as improved safety and efficiency for aviation operations and the traveling public.
“The FAA will be using thunderstorm and lightning warning systems with the most accurate, validated and reliable lightning data available in the market,” comments Dan Donahue Key Account Manager for the FAA at Vaisala.
“We are committed to helping the FAA enhance their weather safety and research programs, including the addition of cloud lightning data and classification, and supporting new weather programs, such as oceanic weather radar proxy and airport lightning warning systems.”
Vaisala has been providing lightning data to the FAA for over 10 years, winning a competitive bid last year to extend service through September 24, 2019.
About Vaisala Lightning
Vaisala’s lightning detection technology sets the standard for the lightning industry. Customers worldwide rely on Vaisala’s leading expertise in lightning data and information systems. Vaisala delivers the highest standards of accuracy and reliability in sensor technology, central processing, application software, and customer support.
Vaisala is a global leader in environmental and industrial measurement. Building on 78 years of experience, Vaisala contributes to a better quality of life by providing a comprehensive range of innovative observation and measurement products and services for chosen weather-related and industrial markets. Headquartered in Finland, Vaisala employs approximately 1500 professionals worldwide and is listed on the NASDAQ OMX Helsinki stock exchange.