Rockwell Collins expands aircraft observation weather research program through new agreement with NOAA

Rockwell Collins is expanding its successful aircraft observation weather research program with The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to improve the accuracy of forecasts for the aviation industry and the general public.

Under the terms of a new agreement between Rockwell Collins and NOAA, research will expand to include coverage over sparse areas of the United States, such as the upper Midwest and Alaska as well as Pacific Ocean areas, allowing the National Weather Service (NWS) to get complete weather data for the entire country.

“This is a great opportunity to make valuable use of data about the weather conditions encountered on many of the routes we fly,” said Bob Frisch, vice president, Flight Operations for Air Wisconsin, the first regional airline, and one of the newest participating airlines, in the program. “Conditions in the Midwest and Northeast can at times be particularly challenging, so the more we can accurately forecast and plan for these situations, the better we can improve route planning to enhance safety, passenger comfort, and our ability to efficiently manage our operation.”

Since 1991, the company’s ARINC Meteorological Data Collection and Reporting System (MDCRS) has gathered information such as wind speed, air temperature and turbulence from commercial aircraft for the NWS and the Federal Aviation Administration. In 2007, ARINC MDCRS added the measurement of humidity via water vapor data, providing valuable insight into the prediction of flight-disrupting thunderstorms.

“Better forecasting of severe weather has clear benefits for the aviation industry, like improving passenger safety and flight routes while saving costs by reducing unplanned deviations,” said David Poltorak, vice president, Aviation and Network Services for Rockwell Collins. “The continued expansion of this program is enabling better predictability and preparedness for weather events that impact individuals and organizations around the world.”

Source: Rockwell Collins, Inc. (NYSE: COL)
Date: Feb 4, 2015