Meteorologist Gary England welcomes you to the National Weather Center! Click on the link below to take a quick tour of our building and learn a bit more about the enterprise housed within our walls.NWC Welcome Video
Research is a hallmark of the National Weather Center. From national research organizations such as the NOAA National Severe Storms Laboratory to academic researchers from multiple disciplines, the National Weather Center remains at the forefront of innovation and critical discovery in the field of meteorology.
Tours of the National Weather Center are offered to schools, groups and individuals at no cost. Reservations are required and tours fill up quickly so check the tour schedule for availability and more details.
The National Weather Center Library supports the research and education of all entities in the National Weather Center and the students of the University of Oklahoma. Students, faculty, staff and other members of the National Weather Center have access to numerous databases of information including both OU and NOAA Libraries.
Multiple organizations within the National Weather Center forecast weather for areas throughout the country, including our location in Norman, Oklahoma. You can get your latest forecast through our current weather page or by clicking below.
The annual National Weather Festival, held each fall at the National Weather Center, highlights the many weather related organizations and activities in central Oklahoma. This free, open-house event is filled with fun activities for all ages!
The National Weather Center houses a unique confederation of University of Oklahoma, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and state organizations that work together in partnership to improve understanding of events occurring in Earth’s atmosphere over a wide range of time and space.
Looking for some NWC merchandise for yourself or a weather enthusiast? Click below to visit our online retail shop! We also have a physical location in the Visitor Center at the National Weather Center! Whether you are in need of a t-shirt, travel mug or pet tornado, we've got it all!
The National Weather Center is a proud Adventure Road Travel Partner. Explore the Chickasaw Nation's Adventure Road today and create your own personalized itinerary including the National Weather Center, Sam Noble Museum, Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art and other attractions on Oklahoma's Adventure Road.
These 130 miles of Oklahoma highway are built for explorers and travelers, individuals and families, whether looking for amazing day trips or spectacular week-long getaways. The notion of breaking free and hitting the road is a time-honored tradition – Adventure Road helps to ensure that tradition is kept alive.
From blizzards to tornadoes, Rick Smith has seen and forecast it all. He’s the warning coordination meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Norman, Okla. — one of the busiest weather forecast offices in the nation.
Every year, the Norman office issues hundreds of severe-weather alerts, including dozens of tornado warnings, meticulously predicting and tracking Mother Nature’s every move. It’s no easy job, but Smith and his colleagues have taken innovative and unique steps to streamline the process. It’s like “doing weather in the future,” he says. Read more....
Come show off your skills at the 1st ever South Campus Corn Hole Tournament! We’ll have food trucks, extra games to play, and a team spirit award. Your participation helps raise money for Wildcare Oklahoma! $30/team to enter the tournament or $5 to come watch the fun!
To sign up to play, click here!
The University of Oklahoma’s newest Shared Mobile Atmospheric Research and Teaching Radar, SR3, today deployed to Monroe, Louisiana, where a slight risk of tornadic storms exists. An upgrade of the original dual-polarimetric SMART radar, the SR3 just completed its first mission on March 19 to New Market, Alabama, in coordination with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Severe Storms Laboratory and the OU Cooperative Institute for Mesoscale Meteorological Studies.
“The SR3 and NOAA’s P-3 aircraft collected data on a rapidly evolving severe hailstorm that preceded a series of tornadic supercells. The SR3 collaborated with the University of Alabama Huntsville and National Weather Service Hytop radars in southern Tennessee on sampling a tornadic storm that produced significant damage as it crossed the border into northern Alabama. Multi-radar observations were captured over a three-hour period from the initial organization to tornadic dissipation,” said Michael Biggerstaff, professor of meteorology and director of the OU SMART radar program.
The SR3 observed a second tornadic storm to the south that produced five tornadoes and hailstones as large as 5.25 inches. The P-3 aircraft flew ahead of the southern tornadic storm and measured winds within the storm during all five tornadoes. The SR3 and P-3 aircraft will continue to work together near Monroe tonight. The project is part of the Southeastern Tornadogenesis and Risk Reduction Exercise, which runs until April 13. The STARR project is part of the larger VORTEX-Southeast research project funded by NOAA. https://www.nssl.noaa.gov/projects/vortexse/
When the project ends, the SR3 will return to Oklahoma to be used to train the next generation of scientists in an undergraduate radar meteorology course.
NORMAN, Okla.—A University of Oklahoma professor, Cameron Homeyer, is a recipient of a NASA Research Opportunities in Space and Earth Science grant for new, early career investigators. Homeyer’s research is the first concept of its kind to take ground-based radar observations of storms and link them to satellite observations of trace gases to better understand the characteristics of storms and how they modify the atmospheric composition.
“NASA’s Early Career Investigator Award goes only to the best of the best. We are thrilled and honored that NASA has selected Professor Homeyer to receive this award,” said Berrien Moore, vice president of Weather and Climate Programs, dean of the OU College of Atmospheric and Geographic Sciences and director of the National Weather Center.
“We are applying methods to discriminate between air masses that recently have been modified by storms and those air masses that have not been impacted by storms,” said Homeyer, assistant professor and associate director for undergraduate studies, School of Meteorology, OU College of Atmospheric Sciences. “This is the first time anyone has applied these methods in this way to understand this problem.”
The impact of storms on atmospheric composition is not well understood and changes in water vapor and ozone from these storms can have important impacts on Earth’s climate and human health. Storms move air masses with certain chemical characteristics around, and these air masses can impact the atmosphere’s radiation budget, pollution and air quality.
“We don’t understand how these storms modify Earth’s upper atmosphere, particularly in the stratosphere, the layer of the Earth’s atmosphere where the ozone lies and absorbs the ultraviolet radiation; and the troposphere, the layer of the Earth’s atmosphere where human activity takes place,” said Homeyer.
Homeyer will use a trajectory model and information on winds in the atmosphere, then put particles or little air bubbles in places where the storms occur, move them around with the winds and watch as they move downstream to find locations where air masses from storms coincide with satellite observations. Satellite observations from around the world then can be linked to recent storms and compared to air masses that have not been influenced by storms.
Funding for the three-year, $284,000 grant supports the NASA Earth Science mission by advancing the use of satellites and providing data that contributes to understanding the climate system.
WASHINGTON — A report setting priorities for the next decade of Earth science missions recommends that NASA pursue a mix of large and small missions to help better understand the changing nature of the planet.
The report, released by the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine in an event here Jan. 5, includes a portfolio of proposed missions that it believes can fit within NASA’s Earth science budget assuming it grows at the rate of inflation, but with “decision rules” for delaying missions should those budgets fall short.
The proposed missions, along with the existing “program of record” of missions in service today or under development, are intended to help scientists better understand the ways that the climate, water cycle, soil and other resources are changing, research the report argues can be uniquely done with satellites.
“Earth science and applications are a key part of the nation’s information infrastructure, warranting a U.S. program of Earth observations from space that is robust, resilient, and appropriately balanced,” the report states.
NORMAN – The University of Oklahoma has unveiled a student design to serve as the official logo for the Geostationary Carbon Cycle Observatory science mission. OU College of Law 1st Year student Joshua H. Cole was named winner of the $595 prize in the GeoCarb Logo Contest.
"I am consistently impressed with the talents of OU students, said OU Vice President for Weather and Climate Programs Berrien Moore. "We showed the top 10 logos to the NASA Review board and they could not believe the quality. We could not be prouder of the work done by Joshua Cole and the other students. This project is going to take OU to the next level!”
Cole’s design was selected for demonstrating creativity, uniqueness and outstanding representation of the GeoCarb science mission.
“The University of Oklahoma College of Law is incredibly proud that one of our students, Josh Cole, designed the winning logo for the GeoCarb Mission,” said OU College of Law Dean Joseph Harroz Jr. “His design will play a key role in advancing the public’s understanding of this exciting scientific mission. Josh’s innovative mind will undoubtedly one day lead him to success in the legal profession and beyond.”
The GeoCarb logo features a bold scene in space, depicting the process of a satellite flying over North America. The modern style and shape of the logo invoke the imagery of a spaceflight mission patch typically worn by astronauts and mission personnel. Additionally, the design comes together with the iconic OU crimson to accurately express the collaborative element of the mission.
A nine-year, OU-led, $161 million NASA contract, GeoCarb is a first-of-its-kind Earth science mission that will extend our nation’s lead in measuring key carbon-based greenhouse gases and vegetation health from space to advance understanding of Earth’s natural exchanges of carbon between land, atmosphere and ocean.
For more information, please contact the GeoCarb Science Mission Office at (405) 325-0667 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The OU Shared Mobile Atmospheric and Teaching radar team, led by Michael Biggerstaff, OU School of Meteorology, will depart Norman for Corpus Christi, Texas, this afternoon with the mobile C-band dual-polarimetric radar to study the landfall of what will become major Hurricane Harvey. The team will focus on tornadic circulations in the outer rain bands as part of the on-going VORTEX-SE research program objectives, as well as examine the inner core and eyewall circulations that produce inland flooding as part of the NASA Fellowship project.
OU is part of the Digital Hurricane Consortium, which is a group of university and federal government researchers who deploy sensors in advance of landfalling hurricanes. The DHC is part of the federal Disaster Impacts Assessment Plan, which is part of the COASTAL Act that is aimed at better understanding the roles of storm surge and extreme winds on the loss of houses and other buildings in the path of landfalling hurricanes.
The radar truck will be equipped with cameras provided as a result of a recent collaboration between OU, AT&T and The Weather Channel. OU SMART radar team members include Biggerstaff; Addison Alford, OU doctoral student; and Gordon Carrie, OU research associate. The team will be operational by Friday and will provide updates when possible.
The University of Oklahoma Cooperative Institute for Mesoscale Meteorological Studies and School of Meteorology announce the addition of Dr. Greg McFarquhar to their staffs.
McFarquhar will be the Director of OU CIMMS and School of Meteorology Professor starting this fall. Randy Peppler has been interim director after former OU CIMMS director and Meteorology Professor Dr. Peter Lamb passed away in May 2014.
"We look forward to Greg leading CIMMS in innovative ways in order to help address future NOAA research challenges in weather radar and mesoscale meteorology,” Peppler said.
McFarquhar comes from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign as a professor in the Department of Atmospheric Sciences. He has worked at the university since 2001. He has also served as a visiting faculty fellow at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado from 2015 to 2016.
McFarquhar’s PhD and his Masters of Science are in Atmospheric Physics and his Bachelors of Science is in Mathematics and Physics, all from the University of Toronto.
Director of the National Weather Center Dr. Berrien Moore said, “The University of Oklahoma is delighted to have a gifted scientist and extraordinary leader join the OU family as the Director of the Cooperative Institute for Mesoscale Meteorological Studies. The possibilities are endless!”
McFarquhar has been involved with more than 100 peer-reviewed publications, the principal investigator for more than 100 different grants and involved in more than 20 field campaigns.
“After being involved in many different projects at other universities and research institutes over the past 25 years investigating the impact of clouds on various weather phenomena, I am looking forward to broadening my horizons with even more exciting work over the next several years at CIMMS and The University of Oklahoma,” McFarquhar said. “I am especially impressed with the credentials of the amazing people already working here. I hope that I can strengthen and improve the existing collaborations and partnerships already, as well as finding new avenues for improving the observation, analysis, understanding and prediction of weather elements and systems.”
CIMMS was established in 1978 as a cooperative program that unites the scientific and technical resources of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and OU into a center of research excellence. CIMMS was created to support NOAA’s Mission of Science, Service and Stewardship and thereby contribute to NOAA’s long-term goal of building a Weather-Ready Nation that is prepared for and responds to weather-related events. CIMMS research areas include weather radar, hydrometeorology, observations and numerical modeling of high-impact weather including severe storms, forecast and warning improvements, regional climate variations, the societal and socioeconomic impacts of weather and climate, and related subject areas.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Dec. 6, 2016
NORMAN – The University of Oklahoma has been awarded a five-year, $166 million grant by NASA to advance understanding of Earth’s natural exchanges of carbon between the land, atmosphere and ocean.
The primary goals of the Geostationary Carbon Cycle Observatory, led by Berrien Moore, OU Vice President for Weather and Climate Programs, are to monitor plant health and vegetation stress throughout the Americas, and to examine the natural sources and processes that control carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide and methane in the atmosphere.
“To say this is an extraordinary achievement by Dr. Berrien Moore and our research team is an understatement,” said former OU President David L. Boren. “The grant is one of the most exceptional in the history of the University and is testimony to the outstanding national stature of our research team. I cannot think of a more exciting way to observe the holiday season than with the announcement of this remarkable grant.”
The mission will launch on a commercial communications satellite to make observations over the Americas from an orbit of approximately 22,000 miles above the equator.
The OU-led geoCARB team will build an advanced payload employing otherwise unused launch and spacecraft capacity to advance science and provide societal benefit.
Mission collaborators include the Lockheed Martin Advanced Technology Center in Palo Alto, California; SES Government Solutions Company in Reston, Virginia; the Colorado State University in Fort Collins; and NASA’s Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, California, Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, and Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. Colleagues and laboratories from France, Australia and Mexico also are contributing to the project.
The mission was competitively selected from 15 proposals submitted to the agency’s second Earth Venture - Mission announcement of opportunity for small orbital investigations of the Earth system.