Barry Baker and Li Pan published the Model and ObservatioN Evaluation Toolkit (MONET) in the journal Atmosphere (http://www.mdpi.com/2073-4433/8/11/210).  MONET was developed to evaluate the Community Multiscale Air Quality Model (CMAQ) used in the National Air Quality Forecast Capability (NAQFC) modeling system.  MONET is designed to be a modularized Python package for (1) pairing model output to observational data in space and time; (2) leveraging the pandas Python package for easy searching, resampling and grouping; and, (3) analyzing and visualizing data.  This process introduces a convenient method for evaluating model output.  Observational datasets included in MONET are the EPA AQS, AirNOW, IMPROVE, CRN, ISD, CSN, and AERONET networks.  Additional networks are planned to be added in the future along with other models including HYSPLIT and NGGPS.  MONET is available at https://github.com/noaa-oar-arl/MONET.


Dennis Finn has submitted a manuscript entitled “Plume Dispersion in Low Wind Speed Conditions During Project Sagebrush Phase 2 with Emphasis on Measurement Uncertainties” to Boundary Layer Meteorology. Other FRD staff are coauthors along with collaborators from Washington State University. The manuscript focuses on the light-wind tracer tests conducted last year for Project Sagebrush. Those tests demonstrated many of the challenges associated with plume modeling under such conditions, including the observation that samplers located only about 1 m apart can still have significantly different time-average concentrations.

FRD staff is nearing completion of the fourth edition of the Idaho National Laboratory (INL) climatology. The third edition was based on INL meteorological network observations from about 1950 up through 2006. The new edition updates all the climate statistics using observations through 2015. Jason Rich has been leading the effort to complete the climatology, which will be published as a NOAA Technical Memorandum.

On Tuesday, Idaho Falls high school student Daniel Brown visited FRD as part of a mentoring program for his senior project. Daniel is interested in meteorology and operates his own weather station. Jason Rich and Dennis Finn introduced Daniel to the activities conducted at the division, and Jason took him to one of the meteorological towers in the NOAA/INL Mesonet.


Desert Rock Weather Observatory, NNSS (DRA) Tour:  Walt Schalk and James Wood hosted a tour of about 15 scientists each from the DOE National Laboratories.  The tour was part of the Federal Expertise Training program hosted by NNSA.  The tour took place at the Desert Rock Weather Observatory at the Nevada National Security Site.  A verbal history of the SORD program and support of the testing program was given.  SORD’s current activities were also presented.  The numerous instrumented sites that SORD maintains for NNSS Programs (SODAR, mesonet and lightning detection network) and hosts for a variety of NOAA Programs (Climate Reference Network, SURFRAD, GPS Water Vapor soundings – ESRL) located in the immediate Desert Rock area were discussed.  As a finale, a Pilot Balloon (PIBAL) release was demonstrated.

James Wood, Rick Lantrip, and Walt Schalk continued the latest round of station instrumentation calibration/verification, 4 were completed this week.

Walt Schalk and Rick Lantrip gave an overview of the ARL/SORD Program to several new hires of the NNSA/Nevada Field Office (NFO).  The overview included discussions on the services provided to the NFO and the observation systems operated and maintained in order to collect the data required.  The meeting ended with a tour of the SORD Facilities in the NFO Nevada Support Facility.


Rick Saylor and Nebila Lichiheb attended the 2017 National Atmospheric Deposition Program Fall Meeting in San Diego, CA. Dr. Saylor presented a poster entitled “The Atmospheric Chemistry and Canopy Exchange Simulation System for Ammonia (ACCESS-NH3): Formulation and Application to a Corn Canopy” and Dr. Lichiheb presented a poster entitled “Evaluation of Ammonia Air-Surface Exchange at the Field Scale: Improvement of Soil and Stomatal Emission Potential Parameterizations”. For more information contact either Rick Saylor (Rick.Saylor@noaa.gov) or Nebila Lichiheb (Nebila.Lichiheb@noaa.gov).