Optimization of lightning warning areas at Cape Canaveral/Kennedy Space Center
Ceschini, Erin M.
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Lightning is the primary weather hazard to spaceflight operations. At CCAFS/KSC, there are 13 individual lightning warning circles centered on locations with considerable outdoor operational activity. Reducing the number of individual lightning warning circles by combining existing warning circles or creating new warning areas based on lightning patterns has the potential benefit of reducing the workload of the forecasters on duty. However, this must be balanced against the impact of over-warning to the customers. Principal component analysis was conducted on lightning warnings issued by the 45 WS and on 4DLSS data to evaluate co-variability of the current warning circles. Additionally, lightning warnings issued by 45 WS for CCAFS/KSC were evaluated to quantify the temporal overlap of the lightning warnings for adjacent circles. Perfect warnings were simulated using 4DLSS data to determine lightning warning overlap in a perfect scenario for comparison against actual operations. The results of the principal component analysis and temporal overlap calculations were used to identify possible alternative warning areas. Finally, multi-objective decision analysis was performed to make a recommendation for the consolidation of warning circles.
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