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Award Abstract #1245737

Collaborative Research: Antarctic Automatic Weather Station Program 2013-2017

Division Of Polar Programs
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Initial Amendment Date: April 12, 2013
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Latest Amendment Date: April 9, 2015
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Award Number: 1245737
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Award Instrument: Standard Grant
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Program Manager: Peter J. Milne
PLR Division Of Polar Programs
GEO Directorate For Geosciences
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Start Date: April 15, 2013
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End Date: March 31, 2017 (Estimated)
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Awarded Amount to Date: $372,097.00
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Investigator(s): John Cassano john.cassano@colorado.edu (Principal Investigator)
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Sponsor: University of Colorado at Boulder
3100 Marine Street, Room 481
Boulder, CO 80303-1058 (303)492-6221
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Program Reference Code(s): 5113
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Program Element Code(s): 5113


The Antarctic Automatic Weather Station (AAWS) network, first commenced in 1978, is the most extensive ground meteorological network in the Antarctic, approaching its 30th year at several of its installations. Its prime focus as a long term observational record is to measure the near surface weather and climatology of the Antarctic atmosphere. AWS sites measure air-temperature, pressure, wind speed and direction at a nominal surface height of 3m. Other parameters such as relative humidity and snow accumulation may also be measured. Observational data from the AWS are collected via the DCS Argos system aboard either NOAA or MetOp polar orbiting satellites and thus made available in near real time to operational and synoptic weather forecasters.

The surface observations from the AAWS network are important records for recent climate change and meteorological processes. The surface observations from the AAWS network are also used operationally, and in the planning of field work. The surface observations from the AAWS network have been used to check on satellite and remote sensing observations.


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Kennicutt II, M., S.L. Chown, J. Cassano, D. Liggett, R. Massom, L. Peck, S. Rintoul, J. Storey, D. Vaughn, T. Wilson, and W.J. Sutherland. "Antarctic and Southern Ocean science in the 21st century," Nature, v.512, 2014, p. 23.

Nigro, M.A. and J.J. Cassano. "Analysis of Ross Ice Shelf airstream forcing mechanisms using self organizing maps," Mon. Wea. Rev., v.142, 2014, p. 4719. 

Nigro, M.A. and J.J. Cassano. "Identification of surface wind patterns over the Ross Ice Shelf, Antarctica using self organizing maps," Mon. Wea. Rev., v.142, 2014, p. 2361. 

Kennicutt II, M.C., S.L. Chown, J.J Cassano, D. Liggett, L.S. Peck, R. Massom, S.R. Rintoul, J. Storey, D.G. Vaughn, T.J. Wilson, I. Allison, J. Ayton, R. Badhe, J. Baeseman, P.J. Barrett, R.E. Bell, N. Bertler, S. Bo, A. Brandt, D. Bromwich, S.C. Cary, M. "A roadmap for Antarctic and Southern Ocean science for the next two decades and beyond," Antarctic Science, 2014. 

Colwell, S.R., A.M. Cayette, M.A. Lazzara, J.G. Powers, D.H. Bromwich, J.J. Cassano, and S. Carpentier. "The 10th Antarctic Meteorological Observation, Modeling, and Forecasting Workshop," Advances in Atmospheric Sciences, 2016. 


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