Contact: David Miller
NOAA News Releases 2003
NOAA Home Page
NOAA Public Affairs

Funds for Weather Research and Improving Forecasts and Warnings

The Commerce Department’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has awarded a $2.5 million grant to the University of Oklahoma Cooperative Institute for Mesoscale Meteorological Studies (CIMMS).

Working closely with NOAA, the CIMMS will utilize the funding for weather research and improving forecasts and warnings of hazardous storms. The grant will also provide funding for research scientists and associates, information technology analysts, visiting research scientists, and research opportunities for graduate and undergraduate students.

“NOAA and the Bush Administration are working to improve the understanding of our environment to strengthen regional and national initiatives, such as the programs proposed by the University of Oklahoma,” said retired Navy Vice Admiral Conrad C. Lautenbacher, Ph.D., undersecretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and NOAA administrator. “This grant will help vital weather research and advance knowledge critical to those living in storm prone areas.”

“CIMMS was delighted to receive this awardIt will help us sustain our research in several important areas that contribute to the protection of life and property, and affect the economic well-being of people in the Southern Great Plains and across much of the U.S.,” said Peter J. Lamb, Director of CIMMS and George Lynn Cross Research Professor of Meteorology at the University of Oklahoma.

Each year, NOAA awards approximately $900 million in grants to members of the academic, scientific and business communities to assist the agency in fulfilling its mission to study the Earth’s natural systems in order to predict environmental change, manage ocean resources, protect life and property, and provide decision makers with reliable scientific information. NOAA goals and programs reflect a commitment to these basic responsibilities of science and service to the nation for the past 33 years.

In particular, this NOAA award will be used by CIMMS scientists to analyze weather radar observations of severe convective weather to understand severe storm processes and to improve warning decision support. Also, in partnership with scientists at the Oklahoma Climatological Survey, NOAA seeks to better quantify land-atmosphere memory by examining numerical model output and observed data from the Oklahoma Mesonet. Finally, a majority of the funding will be used to better understand and predict hazardous storms to improve forecasts and warnings.

CIMMS is a cooperative institute between NOAA and The University of Oklahoma. The joint institute conducts research in hazardous weather, mesoscale meteorology, regional climate and related subject areas. In Norman, CIMMS has collocated programs and personnel with NOAA’s National Severe Storms Laboratory, National Weather Service, Warning Decision Training Branch, Storm Prediction Center and Radar Operations Center. About 190 researchers, post-docs, graduate students and staff are supported in CIMMS.

The Commerce Department’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is dedicated to enhancing economic security and national safety through the prediction and research of weather and climate-related events and providing environmental stewardship of our nation’s coastal and marine resources.

On the Web: