October 16, 2013
By Jim Moore
The federal system for distributing digital aviation weather to pilots and third-party providers will be the topic of discussion Oct. 24 in Las Vegas, as Friends and Partners in Aviation Weather holds its fall meeting. Pilots are encouraged to participate, even if unable to attend the National Business Aviation Association convention, where the discussion will be held, in person: A call-in line has been established, with advance registration available online.
The Aviation Digital Data Service (ADDS) distributes text and graphic forecast products, including observations and analyses used for flight planning. Data and products can be accessed online through the government website, www.aviationweather.gov; the same data is offered through various flight planning products. ADDS is a joint effort of various federal agencies and departments (and one of the government services deemed “essential” during the October federal shutdown). The Oct. 24 meeting will give users an opportunity to help shape future improvements, and feedback is important. AOPA staff will be participating in person, and urges pilots to join the discussion.
The federal website that many pilots use to access the data has recently been redesigned, with a new version posted for testing and evaluation by users that offers an updated graphic presentation and navigation of the various weather data products. Feedback on the new website is accepted online; the Oct. 24 session, from 3:15 to 4:15 p.m. Pacific (6:15 to 7:15 p.m. Eastern) will cover all aspects of the service, providing an opportunity to speak directly to representatives of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, National Centers for Environmental Prediction, and Aviation Weather Center, among others.
AOPA Online Associate Editor Jim Moore joined AOPA in 2011 and is an instrument-rated private pilot who enjoys competition aerobatics.
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