Australian tech receives Geospatial World Award

By on 13 May, 2014


A major upgrade to the Bureau of Meteorology’s forecast and warning system has been awarded a prestigious international geospatial award in Geneva.

At the Geospatial World Awards 2014, Geospatial Media and Communications honoured the best of the industry by conferring 14 excellence awards, 10 leadership awards, 5 policy awards and 8 innovation awards.

The Next Generation Forecast and Warning System (NexGenFWS) was named recipient of a ‘Geospatial Technology Innovation Award’ at the awards ceremony, held in Geneva last week.

The project enabled a leap forward in the delivery of weather forecast services. Seven day forecasts are now available for 650 locations in Australia, a level of service previously only available in capital cities, and a web-based viewer allows people to generate a forecast for any specified location.

Bureau of Meteorology Director, Dr Rob Vertessy, said the award is a credit to the work of many Bureau staff who contributed their expertise to the NexGenFWS project since it began in 2009.

“This award is one of the most prominent peer-reviewed awards in the geospatial industry and recognises the innovative use of geospatial technology,” Dr Vertessy said.

“In delivering NexGenFWS, the project team has built a forecasting system with the capacity to handle the complexities of forecasting a range of weather, such as tropical cyclones, thunderstorms, rainfall, fog and frost.

“The work in presenting this forecast information through interactive maps has enabled the Bureau to develop MetEye, a graphical forecast viewer with a point and click interface.

“MetEye brings together the most popular elements of the Bureau’s website, displaying seven day forecasts, satellite and radar imagery and real-time weather data such as temperature, rainfall, cloud cover, humidity and wind speed.

“It offers a whole new way for communities to view their local weather.”

NexGenFWS and MetEye have been recognised with a number of industry awards since the project began, including last month’s 2013 Asia-Pacific Spatial Excellence Award for Technical Excellence, presented at Locate14 in Canberra.

“These awards show that the Bureau is an innovative and technically capable organisation working to deliver the best possible service to the Australian community.”

“It is a privilege to lead a team so dedicated to excellence in their chosen field.”

The Next Generation Forecast and Warning System has been successfully rolled out in Victoria, New South Wales, Tasmania, South Australia, Western Australia and Queensland. The Northern Territory roll-out later this year will complete the national project.

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