The explosion of forecast model data produced by the National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) as well as associated efforts (such as the WRF model development) creates a unique problem for the path to operations in the Weather Forecast Office (WFO). Software developed in the mid-1990's has reached it's capacity towards support of a proliferation of gridded data sets in the forecast office. A need for new hardware and software technology infusion exists. Current metrics show that the NOAAPORT Satellite Broadcast Network broadcasts over one million products (expanding to over 15GB of data) daily. Of these data, approximately 150,000 grib-encoded grids are transmitted and processed each day at a forecast office. A case study at the Boulder, CO weather forecast office, monitoring every key click a forecaster makes on the D2D workstation, shows that only 575 grids are accessed more than ten times in a month.(Roberts, et al). This begs the question: why do forecast office need to ingest all of grids if only a mall number of are actually accessed? The quantity of model data will only increase rapidly, creating challenges for the current data storage and retrieval schema. The file storage sizes are starting to exceed maximum sizes for operating systems. A new way to store and access data is necessary to keep up with growing demands.
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