Inaugural testbed guides future of nowcasting in Africa

African SWIFT’s inaugural testbed was the first event of its kind in Africa, bringing together operational forecasters and researchers to forecast African weather patterns in real time. The testbed was conducted in early 2019 from an operational forecasting office in Nairobi at the Kenya Meteorological Department.

Researchers, forecasters and participants of Testbed 1 gathered at IMTR Nairobi.

Designed to support SWIFT’s programme of research capability-building in the science of weather forecasting, the testbed enabled testing and use of forecasting and evaluation products completely new to the country.

Major successes included the use of real-time satellite-based Nowcasting productions, convection-permitting model ensembles from the UK Met Office, and systematic forecast evaluation. The outcomes captured will be used to steer further research and development of the tools, as well as to provide meteorological case studies and to stimulate new hypotheses for exploration.

The final report captures more achievements from the testbed, including the development of an effective programme of work for operational synoptic forecasting, nowcasting, and evaluation, methods which could inform new standard operating procedures.

Read the full report here. 

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