The International Air Transport Association (IATA) and WMO have signed an agreement to increase and improve the automated reporting of meteorological data by commercial aircraft.
The new initiative aims to expand the existing WMO Aircraft Meteorological Data Relay (AMDAR) system to ensure coverage over data-sparse areas. It is expected to bring many additional and new partner airlines into the program, which is already supported by approximately 40 airlines covers several thousand passenger and cargo aircraft.
AMDAR produces over 800 000 high-quality observations per day of air temperature and wind speed and direction, as well as humidity and turbulence measurements.
However, one of the many unfortunate aspects of the COVID-19 crisis has been the severe loss – of up to 90% - of aircraft-derived meteorological data as a result of the steep decline in airline operations and passenger flights since March 2020.
It is important that airlines are able to take advantage of all available cost and operational efficiencies. One such efficiency can be derived from the enhanced use of better-quality weather forecasts and other meteorological information that results from the improved availability of AMDAR data.
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