ARL Staff Receive NOAA Administrator Award

August, 2014

Congratulations to ARL’s Glenn Rolph, Roland Draxler, and Brad Reese, and to their partners from the National Ocean Service’s Office of Response and Restoration (OR&R), Mark Miller and Jerry Muhasky, for receiving the 2014 NOAA Administrator’s Award for major advances in toxic gas dispersion model forecasting capabilities for the Nation to better protect human life and property.

ARL and OR&R released a joint dispersion modeling system that was successfully installed at the NOAA Web Operations Center. This new system provides NOAA National Weather Service (NWS) forecasters with the ability to first simulate a release of a hazardous chemical to the atmosphere, using the extensive scenario-based source term configuration of the Areal Locations of Hazardous Atmospheres (ALOHA) model developed by OR&R and the Environmental Protection Agency, and then simulate the resulting plume, using the HYSPLIT atmospheric transport and dispersion model developed by ARL. Based on user input, the ALOHA model creates a time-varying release rate that is used by HYSPLIT for transport and dispersion calculations. The HYSPLIT system also has menu-driven capabilities to simulate the release of other hazardous pollutants to the atmosphere, such as smoke and radiological contaminants.

The NOAA Administrator’s Awards recognize employees who have demonstrated exceptional leadership, skill, and ingenuity in their significant, unique, and original contributions that bring unusual credit to NOAA, DOC, and the Federal Government. The award includes $5,000; in the case of group awards, this is distributed equally among winners.

For More Information, contact: Rick Artz