What is aviation forecasting?

Aviation forecasting is a critical support service for the airline industry. Aviation forecasters warn pilots and airline management about potentially hazardous weather conditions that could lead to wind shear, wing icing, severe turbulence, strong winds, thunderstorms, or other dangers. While passengers might be frustrated by the delays in air travel that result from these warnings, aviation forecasting probably saves hundreds, even thousands, of lives every year. In addition to the worst-case scenarios that might occur if pilots were not warned of dangerous weather, aviation forecasters can also advise on wind conditions that can help save fuel by not having planes fly into head-on winds. When the cost of airline fuel rises, this has the potential of saving airlines billions of dollars.

What is marine forecasting?

The complement to aviation forecasting, marine forecasting warns sea-going vessels of storms and wave conditions. Such forecasting routinely saves lives, property, and fuel. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Data

Buoy Center keeps track of ocean conditions, particularly issuing hurricane warnings and warnings about swells that may indicate tsunamis caused by underwater earthquakes.

What is agricultural forecasting?

Agricultural forecasting concerns itself with predicting weather conditions, especially hail, that can be hazardous to crops, including precipitation (especially hail), extreme hot and cold, and damaging winds. Accurate forecasting in this area is a particular boon to farmers in that meteorologists can help them decide when it is best to harvest or plant, when wind conditions are right to apply pesticides and herbicides, when to set up irrigation systems, or when to turn on wind machines and smudge pots before an oncoming freeze.

What is industrial forecasting?

Industrial forecasting has applications in economics, both local and national. Weather affects businesses, transportation, and consumer activity in a wide variety of ways. Predicting heat or cold waves, for instance, can help utility companies plan for surges in consumers' use of air conditioners and furnaces. Cities located in drier climates, such as Los Angeles, benefit from rain predictions that affect water reservoirs; local governments, for instance, can issue water conservation guidelines in times of drought to prevent resources from being stretched too thin. The sports industry, a multibillion dollar market, benefits from forecasts planning for rain, snow, or other harsh weather conditions. Forecasts of ice and snow can help transportation firms plan shipments; and even the fast food industry is affected by weather. For example, research has shown that people order a lot more pizza deliveries in cold and inclement weather. In short, industrial forecasting is of great interest to business and government, as it helps people plan for potential losses (winter blizzards or hurricanes routinely cost local economies billions of dollars) or redistribution of resources.

What is fire weather forecasting?

Fire weather forecasters concern themselves with studying rainfall, humidity, temperature, thunderstorms, wind and sunlight conditions that could leave areas such as forests and grasslands vulnerable to wildfires. These forecasts can prepare fire crews and other emergency support before a fire begins, and after fires begin they can help professionals determine such things as the possible direction a fire will spread and whether or not an oncoming rain storm might help put the fire out.

< Prev   CONTENTS   Next >