NiMet, Earth Networks To Install AWOS, Lighting Detectors For Enhanced Forecasting Services 

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The director-general, Nigerian Meteorological Agency, Prof. Mansur Matazu (sixth from left) flanked by agency officials, others.

The Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMet) in collaboration with the Earth Networks is set to install 10 automatic weather observation systems (AWOS), 10 lightning detectors and their required accessories at no commercial value to it, just as NiMet develops its service to deploy EN stations in various locations that will contribute to the Nigeria Total Lightning and Mesoscale AWS Network (NTLMAN) and enable EN forecasting services (ENcast).

The director-general of NiMet, Prof. Mansur Matazu made this known at the kick-off ceremony of the equipment installation made by the agency and EN, a US-based company.

“The equipment will be installed at NiMet facilities and partner institutions in Nigeria to enhance the quality of the data set required to fulfil the terms of the MoU. 

“The installation of the equipment is combined with capacity-building for NiMet officers. This implies that we are not only getting equipment donation; NiMet is also building the capacity of its staff. Under the supervision and guidance of our EN experts, Abuja, Benin and Lagos will be covered. Thereafter, NiMet officers equipped with the skills acquired will carry out the remaining installations.

“NiMet and EN will collaborate to deploy and operate the NTLMAN and distribute data and derivative services within Nigeria. This partnership will lead to a wide base of internally generated revenue for the Agency with the provision of needed services to various sectors of the economy.

 “Through this collaboration, NiMet will be able to access EN data for its internal use and public display in degraded form and to resell sensor data and derivative works to its customers.

“NiMet desires to improve its high impact weather forecasting capacity through the utilization of total lightning data and latest point forecasting techniques to provide related services to its customers and stakeholders.

“Our responsibility is to observe, collate, collect, process and disseminate all meteorological data and information within and outside Nigeria; co-ordinate research activities among staff, and publish scientific papers in various branches of meteorology in support of sustainable socio-economic activities in Nigeria”.

The DG recalled that, on August 18, 2021, the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) between NiMet and Earth Network took place following a formal request for collaboration from Earth Networks Inc. to the agency. 

“The objective of the collaboration is to support the capacity of NiMet to further develop its service offerings/delivery through working together to deploy EN Stations in various locations that will contribute to the Nigeria Total Lightning and Mesoscale AWS Network (NTLMAN) and enable EN forecasting services (ENcast).

“Earth Networks (EN) developed a lightning detection and surface weather monitoring technology that detects a large portion of in-cloud (IC) and cloud to ground (CG) lightning. EN utilises data to enhance weather forecast and enable its proprietary products known as dangerous ‘Thunderstorm Alerts’ and pulse raid respectively. EN also produces and delivers high-resolution proof forecasts known as ENcast and other derivative products,” he said.

Oluchi Okorafor
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