The Multi-Radar Multi-Sensor (MRMS) Hydrometeorology Testbed - Hydro (hereafter denoted as HMT-Hydro) experiment is a part of the United States Weather Research Program (USWRP) through the Hydrometeorology Testbed (HMT) that runs from 25 June to 20 July 2018. During the HMT-Hydro experiment, forecasters and hydrologists from the National Weather Service (NWS) will work with National Severe Storms Laboratory (NSSL) research scientists to assess new technology and techniques to improve the prediction and warning of flash flooding. In particular, NWS participants will evaluate new probabilistic hydrologic modeling concepts and output within the Flooded Locations and Simulated Hydrographs (FLASH) system that could help convey the uncertainty of the flash flood threat. NWS participants will also evaluate high resolution precipitation forecasts from the NSSL Warn-on-Forecast (WoF) project and the addition of these forecasts into the FLASH system. Feedback from participants will allow NSSL research scientists to identify how these precipitation forecasts could influence the warning decision making process, including the potential for increased warning lead time. The HMT-Hydro experiment runs in conjunction with the Flash Flood and Intense Rainfall (FFaIR) experiment at the Weather Prediction Center (WPC) to collaborate on the short-term forecasting of flash flooding for both a national and regional scale.

Testbeds are unique collaborative spaces

where researchers and forecasters work together to improve weather products and services.

In the testbed environment, researchers and forecasters work alongside each other to integrate new observing systems into models, test and streamline data assimilation methods, test model improvements, and strategize new developments for the benefit of the public.

Collaborative User Testing for Weather Information

Testbeds Help NOAA Improve Forecasts

WPO’s Testbeds Program competitively funds NOAA laboratories, academic partners, and commercial industry through grants and cooperative agreements to test and demonstrate new cutting-edge forecast technologies (models, techniques, data, etc.) in the NOAA weather testbeds to accelerate its transition to the National Weather Service (NWS) forecast operations. There are currently four testbeds active under this program. 

  • The Hydrometeorology Testbed conducts research on precipitation and weather conditions that can lead to flooding, and fosters transition of scientific advances and new tools into forecasting operations.
  • The Hazardous Weather Testbed accelerates transition of new meteorological insights and technologies into advances in forecasting and warning for hazardous weather events.
  • The Hurricane and Ocean Testbed mission is to transfer more rapidly and smoothly new technology, research results, and observational advances of the United States Weather Research Program, its sponsoring agencies, the academic community and other groups into improved tropical cyclone analysis and prediction at operational centers. 
  • The Climate Testbed mission is to accelerate improvements in high-priority operational sub-seasonal to seasonal (S2S) monitoring and prediction products.

What’s Happening Now

Updates & Events

Current Focus Areas

Hydrometeorology Testbed

The Hydrometeorology Testbed works to enhance forecaster use of probabilistic information as well as improve probabilistic winter precipitation forecasts, flash flood monitoring and forecasting, atmospheric forcings for hydrologic models, characterization of the state of the current environment, and risk communication.

Hazardous Weather Testbed

The Hazardous Weather Testbed allows research to identify and validate concepts and techniques to improve NOAA models. Its aim is to create skillful and reliable thunderstorm and severe hazard threat forecast guidance 1-hour to 8-days in advance. This testbed also allows researchers to identify and analyze in-situ and remotely-sensed observation datasets and their impact on the forecast as well as integrate relevant social and behavioral science methodologies.

Climate Testbed

The Climate Testbed seeks to leverage research innovations in order to improve the sub-seasonal to seasonal models, products, and services at the NWS Climate Prediction Center (CPC) and the NWS Environmental Modeling Center (EMC).

Hurricane and Ocean Testbed

Researchers in the Hurricane Ocean Testbed work to improve operational analysis of the surface wind field in tropical cyclones, develop guidance for observation strategies based on data and forecast needs, improve tropical cyclone guidance, apply relevant social and behavioral science methodologies, and develop tools to help forecasters better interpret conflicting radar and reconnaissance data.

Project Vignettes

Live Testing of Research Products and Feedback from the Operational Forecast Environment

UFS Weather Model Image of moving Nests

Implementation and testing of stochastic perturbations within a stand-alone regional (SAR) FV3 ensemble using the Common Community Physics Package (CCPP).

The Weather Program Office is working with the Cooperative Institute for Research in the Atmosphere (CIRA) at Colorado State University (CSU) and the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) to advance the forecast capabilities of the Rapid Refresh Forecast System (RRFS) through the testing and implementation of stochastic physics configurations.

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woman with teal umbrella walking down a snowy street.

Advancing Probabilistic Prediction of High-Impact Winter Storms through Ensemble NWP and Post-Processing

The Weather Program Office is working with the University of Utah to improve snowstorm prediction capabilities for forecasts 48 hours to 7 days in advance using techniques and advanced ensemble numerical modeling. Researchers are developing and testing new snow-to-liquid-ratio (SLR) algorithms to improve snowfall forecasts derived from numerical modeling systems,…

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NOAA Testbeds and Proving Grounds Portal

NOAA-Wide Research to Operations

NOAA Testbeds and Proving Grounds Portal

NOAA’s Testbeds and Proving Grounds facilitate the orderly transition of research capabilities to operational implementation through development testing in testbeds, and pre-deployment testing and operational readiness/suitability evaluation in operational proving grounds, as described in the Charter revised in 2020.

In 2011, a coordinating committee was established to facilitate communication and provide coordination and consistency among the approved testbeds (TBs) and operational proving grounds (PGs) in NOAA. The Testbeds and Proving Grounds Coordinating Committee (TBPGCC) is a subcommittee of the Line Office Transition Manager Committee, which is a subcommittee of the NOAA Research Council.

Visit the NOAA Testbeds Portal >

NOAA Testbeds and Proving Grounds Website Screenshot

Taking on Operational Challenges

Currently Funded Projects

Hydrometeorology Testbed

Hazardous Weather Testbed

Climate Testbed

Hurricane and Ocean Testbed

We Provide Testbed Funding Coordination & Support

Contact Our Team

Jordan Dale

Testbeds Program Manager

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Felicia Guarriello

Testbeds Program Coordinator

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