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Appendixes

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A Previous NRC Recommendations on Transitioning Research to Operations TABLE A.1 Previous National Research Council Recommendations Category Recommendation Reporta Research to operations “NASA and NOAA should implement a replacement to the Operational Satellite Improvement Program (OSIP) having the following characteristics • A planned path for the transition of instruments from research to operations • A commitment to algorithm development commensurate with hardware development • Calibration and validation of derived geophysical parameters • Close linkage to the development, testing, and integration facility at NOAA’s EMC.” (p. 8) From Research to Operations in Weather Satellites and Numerical Weather Prediction: Crossing the Valley of Death (NRC, 2000a)   “NOAA should form a team at the start of sensor development, consisting of NOAA and non-NOAA scientists, as well as those representing the end user of forecast information to, (1) plan the full scope of the data research utilization effort as part of sensor design with a budget to support the activity, and (2) assist NCEP in developing the archiving requirements for the EMC user communities.” (p. 8)     “NOAA should adopt the philosophy in which new sensor development would incorporate plans for the inclusion of funds for the transition of the data into operational products at the appropriate stage of the development process.” (p. 10)  

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Category Recommendation Reporta Research to operations (cont’d) “NOAA [should] study the balance of its efforts in weather and climate with the goal of establishing an organization that efficiently balances the task of performing research and transferring this research into operations.” (p. 10) NRC, 2000a (cont’d)   “Climate research and monitoring capabilities should be balanced with the requirements for operational weather observation and forecasting within an overall U.S. strategy for future satellite observing systems. . . . • The Executive Branch should establish a panel within the federal government that will assess the U.S. remote sensing programs and their ability to meet the science and policy needs for climate research and monitoring and the requirements for operational weather observation and forecasting. —The panel should be convened under the auspices of the National Science and Technology Council and draw upon input from agency representatives, climate researchers, and operational users. —The panel should convene a series of open workshops with broad participation by the remote sensing and climate research communities, and by operational users, to begin the development of a national climate observing strategy that would leverage existing satellite-based and ground-based components.” (p. 5) Issues in the Integration of Research and Operational Satellite Systems for Climate Research: I. Science and Design (NRC, 2000c)   “The NASA Earth Science Enterprise [ESE] should continue to play an active role in the acquisition and analysis of systematic measurements for climate research as well as in the provision of new technology for NPOESS. . . . • [ESE] should develop specific technology programs aimed at the development of sustainable instrumentation for NPOESS. • [ESE] should ensure that systematic measurements that are integrated into operational systems continue to meet science requirements. • [ESE] should continue satellite missions for many measurements that are critical for climate research and monitoring.” (p. 6)     “Joint research and operational opportunities such as the NPOESS Preparatory Project [NPP] should become a permanent part of the U.S. Earth observing remote sensing strategy. . . . • The [NPP] concept should be made a permanent part of the U.S. climate observing strategy as a joint NASA-IPO activity. • Some space should be reserved on the NPOESS platforms for research sensors and technology demonstrations as well as to provide adequate data downlink and ground segment capability. • NPP and NPOESS resources should be developed and allocated with the full participation of the Earth science community.” (p. 6)  

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Category Recommendation Reporta Research to operations (cont’d) “Improve the capability to serve the climate information needs of the nation. • Ensure a strong and healthy transition of the U.S. research accomplishments into predictive capabilities that serve the nation. . . . • Expand the breadth and quality of climate products through the development of new instrumentation and technology. • Address climate service product needs derived from long-term projections through an increase in the nation’s modeling and analysis capabilities. . . . • Develop better climate service products based on ensemble climate simulations.” (p. 5) A Climate Services Vision: First Steps Toward the Future (NRC, 2001a)   “NOAA (in cooperation with NASA) should develop a long-range plan for the federal role in operational Earth remote sensing. To the maximum degree possible, this plan should facilitate common use of spacecraft and data-handling systems by institutions (public and private) that mount Earth remote sensing programs. . . .” (p. 45) Assessment of Satellite Earth Observation Programs 1991 (NRC, 1991)   “The system plan should center around the needs of operational programs. . . . Whenever possible, space should be made available for research sensors on vehicles that are used primarily for operational purposes. The potentialities of the Earth orbiting platforms (to be launched as part of the space station program) should be fully exploited. . . .” (p. 45)     “NOAA and DOD, in consultation with the research community, should lead in an effort by all involved agencies to jointly assess instrument facilities that contribute key data to public and private space weather models and to operational programs. They should then determine a strategy to maintain the needed facilities and/or work to establish new facilities. The results of this effort should be available for public dissemination.” (pp. 13-14) The Sun to the Earth—and Beyond: A Decadal Research Strategy in Solar and Space Physics (NRC, 2003)   “NOAA should assume responsibility for the continuance of space-based measurements such as solar wind data from the L1 location as well as near Earth and for distribution of the data for operational use.” (p. 14)     “NASA and NOAA should initiate the necessary planning to transition solar and geospace imaging instrumentation into operational programs for the public and private sectors.” (p. 14)     “The relevant federal agencies should establish an overall verification and validation program for all publicly funded models and system-impact products before they become operational.” (p. 14)  

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Category Recommendation Reporta Research to operations (cont’d) “The operational federal agencies, NOAA and DOD, should establish procedures to identify and prioritize operational needs, and these needs should determine which model types are selected for transitioning via the Community Coordinated Modeling Center and Rapid Prototyping Centers. After the needs have been prioritized, procedures should be established to determine which of the competing scientific and/or commercial models is best suited for a particular operational requirement.” (p. 14) NRC, 2003 (cont’d) Technology— hardware “NOAA and NASA should begin to explore the potential of integrating in situ and satellite observation networks in support of both research and operational needs.” (p. 9) From Research to Operations in Weather Satellites and Numerical Weather Prediction: Crossing the Valley of Death (NRC, 2000a)   “The insertion of technology raises issues of hardware and software capability and capacity. Once a major system has been finalized, it is increasingly difficult to accommodate change. Hence, advance planning that anticipates change and technology insertion over the life of the program is essential. Such planning should be part of system definition and risk reduction (SDRR) phase and continue into the subsequent stages of design.” (p. 39) Issues in the Integration of Research and Operational Satellite Systems for Climate Research: II. Implementation (NRC, 2001e)   “Competitive selection of instrument science teams should be adopted to follow the progress of the instrument from design and fabrication through integration, launch, operation, and finally, data archiving, thereby promoting more thorough instrument characterization.” (p. 3)     “Adaptability and flexibility are essential for any information system if it is to survive in a world of rapidly changing technical capabilities and science requirements. The system should not just react to change but instead should continually track technology and system performance so that it can respond proactively.” (p. 23) Ensuring the Climate Record from the NPP and NPOESS Meteorological Satellites (NRC, 2000d)   “Flexibility in the NPOESS program: Current plans include weight and power growth allowances to enable testing of new sensor concepts and designs on the NPOESS platforms. The committee strongly supports this approach as it will provide opportunities for new measurements as well as a mechanism for cross-validation between different sensor designs. Other approaches to enhance flexibility might be the use of sensor designs that can be easily upgraded, or the use of small satellites as part of the operational observing system, or for technology demonstration.” (p. 3) “On Climate Change Research Measurements from NPOESS” (NRC, 1998b)

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Category Recommendation Reporta Technology— hardware (cont’d) “Instrument/platform design: The present plan is to use on-board propellant to maintain fixed orbit equator-crossing times for the NPOESS satellites. This is a significant improvement for the application of NPOESS measurements to climate research. However, in addition, an overall system architecture failure analysis of the sensors and satellite bus should be performed to identify whether there are small changes that might be made to increase system redundancy and reliability.” (p. 3) NRC, 1998b (cont’d)   “The design of an overall mission architecture, whether for operational or research needs, is a complex process and requires a complete risk-benefit assessment for each particular mission. . . . [A] mixed fleet of small satellite and larger multi-sensor platforms may provide the best combination of flexibility and robustness.” (p. 5) The Role of Small Satellites in NASA and NOAA Earth Observation Programs (NRC, 2000b)   “In planning for future missions . . . NASA and NOAA [should] consider the merits of small, medium, and larger satellites without prejudice, seeking the most appropriate system architecture based on mission requirements and success criteria.” (p. 63)     “Special attention should be devoted to improving the cost-effectiveness of the federal effort in civil remote sensing (for example, by flying both operational and research instruments on the same platforms).” (p. 43) Assessment of Satellite Earth Observation Programs 1991 (NRC, 1991)   “Researchers should have improved access to modern, high-end computing facilities connected with centralized operational activities. . . . These facilities should be sufficiently capable to enable comprehensive study of the climate system and help develop models and techniques to address relevant high-end climate modeling problems.” (p. 6) Improving the Effectiveness of U.S. Climate Modeling (NRC, 2001c) Technology— software and data “A long-term archiving system is needed that provides easy and affordable access for a large number of scientists in many different fields. . . . The system should have the ability to reprocess large data sets as understanding of sensor performance, algorithms, and Earth science improves. Examples of sources of new information that would warrant data reprocessing include the discovery of processing errors, the detection of sensor calibration drift, the availability of better ancillary data sets, and better geophysical models.” (p. 4) Issues in the Integration of Research and Operational Satellite Systems for Climate Research: I. Science and Design (NRC, 2000c)

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Category Recommendation Reporta Technology— software and data (cont’d) “The use of internationally recognized [data] formats, standards, and protocols should be encouraged for remote sensing data and information. . . . [E]ntities pursuing common remote sensing data formats and standards should consult with the sensor and software vendors to ensure that data acquired from the use of new technologies for data acquisition, analysis, and storage and distribution are consistent with other data sets.” (p. 6) Transforming Remote Sensing Data into Information and Applications (NRC, 2001b)   “In order to maximize the effectiveness of different operational climate modeling efforts, these efforts should be linked to each other and to the research community by a common modeling and data infrastructure. Furthermore, operational modeling should maintain links to the latest advances in computer science and information technology.” (p. 7) Improving the Effectiveness of U.S. Climate Modeling (NRC, 2001c)   “NOAA, in cooperation with NASA, should invest in early, limited capability prototypes for both long-term archiving and the NPP data system.” (p. 6) Ensuring the Climate Data Record from the NPP and NPOESS Meteorological Satellites (NRC, 2000d)   “Data preservation should be addressed by all data providers as a routine part of the data production process to ensure continuity of the data record and to avoid inadvertent loss of usable data.” (p. 6) Transforming Remote Sensing Data into Information and Applications (NRC, 2001b) Applications and users “NASA and NOAA should work together to ensure that the continuity of critical climate and weather observations is maintained.” (p. 10) From Research to Operations in Weather Satellites and Numerical Weather Prediction: Crossing the Valley of Death (NRC, 2000a)   “NASA and NOAA should evaluate the potential savings that would result from an interagency commitment to archive NPOESS satellite data through EOSDIS.” (p. 9)   “It is critical that NPOESS develop a coherent and credible plan for the archiving of NPOESS data so that the data are readily available to the community, including the research, operational, and private sectors. This data should extend from raw satellite data to gridded geophysical variables to address the range of potential users.” (p. 9)   “NASA, in cooperation with NOAA, should support the development and evaluation of climate data records, as well as their refinement through data reprocessing.” (p. 4) Ensuring the Climate Data Record from the NPP and NPOESS Meteorological Satellites (NRC, 2000d)   “NOAA and NASA should define and develop a basic set of user services and tools to meet specific functions for the science community, with NOAA assuming increasing responsibility for this activity as data migrates to the long-term archive.” (p. 5)

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Category Recommendation Reporta Applications and users (cont’d) “NASA and NOAA should develop and support activities that will enable a blend of distributed and centralized data and information services for climate research.” (p. 6) NRC, 2000d (cont’d)   “NASA’s Office of Earth Science, Applications Division, in consultation with other stakeholders . . . should mount a study to identify and analyze the full range of short- and long-term costs and benefits of developing remote sensing applications and the full costs of their implementation by public, non-governmental, and other noncommercial users. In addition, NASA should support economic analyses to reduce the start-up costs of developing new remote sensing applications.” (pp. 3-4) Transforming Remote Sensing Data into Information and Applications (NRC, 2001b)   “The Land Grant, Sea Grant, and Agricultural Extension programs should be expanded to include graduate fellowships and associateships to permit students to work at agencies that use remote sensing data. Such programs could help to improve communication and understanding among scientists and engineers who develop applications for remote sensing data and the agencies that use them.” (p. 5)     “NASA’s Space Grant program could be extended to include these training activities, much as the Land Grant program has fostered the development of agricultural extension agents.” (p. 5)     “Federal agencies, including those that produce remote sensing images and those that use them, should consider creating ‘extern’ programs with the purpose of fostering the exchange of staff among user and producer agencies for training purposes.” (p. 4)     “For example, NASA, NOAA, and USGS should create an extern program in collaboration with potential user agencies, such as the Environmental Protection Agency . . . and in so doing could produce trained staff to serve as brokers for information and further training.” (pp. 4-5)     “Both public and private sector data providers should develop mechanisms to obtain regular advice and feedback on applications requirements for use in their planning processes. Advisory bodies that are consulted for input to these decisions should routinely include applications users.” (p. 6)  

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Category Recommendation Reporta Applications and users (cont’d) “Research studies on the socioeconomic aspects of climate and climate modeling should be undertaken at appropriate institutions to design the institutional and governmental structures required to provide effective climate services. The assessment should include: 1. an examination of present and future societal needs for climate information; 2. a diagnosis of existing institutional capabilities for providing climate services; 3. an analysis of institutional and governmental constraints for sustaining a climate observing system, modeling the climate system, communicating with the research community, and delivering useful climate information; 4. an analysis of the human resources available and needed to accomplish these tasks; 5. an analysis of costs and required solutions to remove the constraints in accomplishing the above tasks; 6. recommendations on the most effective form of institutional and governmental organization to produce and deliver climate information for the public and private sectors.” (pp. 7-8) Improving the Effectiveness of U.S. Climate Modeling (NRC, 2001c)   “Promote more effective use of the nation’s weather and climate observation systems. • Inventory existing observing systems and data holdings.... • Promote efficiency by seeking out opportunities to combine the efforts of existing observation networks to serve multiple purposes in a more cost-effective manner.... • Create user centric functions within agencies.... • Perform user-oriented experiments.... • Create incentives to develop and promote observation systems that serve the nation.” (pp. 4-5) A Climate Services Vision: First Steps Toward the Future (NRC, 2001a)   “Interdisciplinary studies and capabilities are needed to address societal needs. • Develop regional enterprises designed to expand the nature and scope of climate services.... • Increase support for interdisciplinary climate studies, applications, and education.... • Foster climate policy education.... • Enhance the understanding of climate through public education.” (p. 6)   aThe National Research Council (NRC) reports cited were all published by the National Academy Press (as of mid-2002 The National Academies Press), Washington, D.C., in the year indicated. They are also listed on p. 89.