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SPACE WEATHER, VOL. 11, 1–2, doi:10.1029/2012SW000882, 2013
Space Weather Community Meets Users
at Annual Meeting
Jeffrey Shoup, Howard Singer, William Murtagh, and Genene Fisher
Published 27 January 2013.
Citation: Shoup, J. D., H. J. Singer, W. J. Murtagh, and G. Fisher (2013), Space Weather Community Meets Users at
Annual Meeting, Space Weather, 11, 1–2, doi:10.1029/2012SW000882.
called for information to be presented in a more useable
fashion, so that when required, immediate action could
be taken both on the ground and in the air. One possible
outcome from the meeting could be a new NOAA Space
Weather Scale based on>100MeV proton observations
from NOAA’s Geostationary Operational Environmental
Satellites. Additional information concerning the aviation
session can be found at:
The Commercial Space Weather Interest Group
Roundtable Session explored the growing public interest in
space weather (Figure 1). This attention, and its significance,
was demonstrated by a panel that included former NOAA
Administrator, VADM Conrad C. Lautenbacher Jr. (Ret.),
representatives from the White House Office of Science
and Technology Policy and Virgin Galactic, the latter
representing the budding commercial human space flight
effort. The importance of private sector, research, and
government collaboration was highlighted as the best
model to support national interests.
Geomagnetic storm mitigation strategies received
emphasis in a session on geomagnetic‐induced currents.
New results on grid impacts were presented, and improved
forecasting through an expanded observation network
and improved modeling techniques was discussed.
Looking ahead to next year, Space Weather Workshop
2013 is set for 16–19 April 2013, in Boulder, CO. Planning
has already begun and it will be an exciting program,
identifying the highest priority needs for space weather
services and opportunities to discuss relevant research
that can be transitioned into operations. See http://www. in early 2013 for the
conference schedule and to register.
The Space Weather Workshop is organized as a partnership among NOAA’s Space Weather Prediction Center,
NASA’s Heliophysics Division, the National Science Foundation’s Division of Atmospheric and Geospace Sciences,
and the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research.
Once again, the Rocky Mountain Flatirons presented a
beautiful backdrop for this year’s annual Space Weather
Workshop (SWW) held on 24–27 April 2012 in Boulder,
Colorado. Over 350 attendees from 16 countries included
researchers, commercial space weather service providers,
forecasters, federal agencies, space weather users, and
students. This diverse group contributed to, and was treated
to, the usual strong backbone of SWW topics (space
weather impacts on infrastructure, prediction modeling,
international coordination, and current research). A key
focus of this year’s meeting was space weather impacts
on satellites and aviation operations, as well as an
opportunity to learn more about the growing government,
public, and private sector interests in space weather.
SWW historically contains a session on satellites in the
agenda; however, this year included an expanded full‐day
meeting with representatives from across the space
industry. Some of the highlights included speakers from
two satellite companies who discussed impacts and
concerns about space weather on the commercial satellite
industry. Other speakers highlighted the importance of
continued improvements in space weather forecasting
and called for more emphasis on predictive forecasting
versus nowcasting /reactionary services.
The aviation community was a second area that
received additional stage time at this year’s SWW. A
prolonged solar minimum resulted in a considerable
lull in some forms of space weather activity. Aviation
customers embraced the opportunity to refresh on space
weather topics, recent impacts on operations, and new
developments as the next solar maximum approaches.
This session’s focus was twofold: what do aviation
customers need, and what can service providers deliver?
Radiation exposure was recognized as a growing concern,
and NOAA’s Space Weather Prediction Center, the nation’s
official source for space weather alerts and warnings,
highlighted that it is exploring options to fill this gap.
Furthermore, operators, including pilots and dispatchers,
©2012. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.
Figure 1. The increase in customer subscriptions since NOAA’s Space Weather Prediction
Center began this particular service in 2005. This figure demonstrates the need for and
public awareness of space weather forecasting.
Jeffrey Shoup is a Commissioned Officer in the NOAA Corps
and is currently stationed as the Project Manager at the Space
Weather Prediction Center (SWPC). Email: Jeffrey.shoup@noaa.
William Murtagh joined SWPC in 1997 and is currently the
SWPC Program Coordinator.
Howard Singer has been with SWPC since 1993; he is
currently the SWPC chief scientist.
Genene Fisher is Senior Advisor for Space Weather at the
NOAA National Weather Service HQ.
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