The mission

NAWDEX is a field experiment that emerged from the WMO THORPEX programme and contributes to the World Weather Research Programme WWRP in general and to the High Impact Weather (HIW) project in particular. An international consortium from the US, Canada, UK, France, Switzerland and Germany applied for funding of a multi-aircraft campaign over the North Atlantic. The international goals are summarized in the NAWDEX science plan (provided soon)

The German/Swiss contribution to NAWDEX aims at locating and quantifying errors in the numerical representation of midlatitude Rossby waves and weather systems that are related to diabatic processes. Therefore remote sensing measurements onboard HALO and DLR Falcon will be carried out to obtain a comprehensive picture of the thermodynamic and flow structure near midlatitude jet streams and to quantify the impact of diabatic processes for the weather evolution over Europe. NAWDEX aims at observing the relevant physical processes that are responsible for the triggering and modification, propagation and downstream impact of Rossby waves on a transatlantic scale over several days in a quasi-Lagrangian experiment. The observation period in September and October 2016 allows to observe the relevant weather systems characterized by strong diabatic activity.

The German/Swiss NAWDEX community has defined the following primary science goals:

Additionally, secondary objectives were defined

For a detailed overview and the scientific background please refer to the HALO and Falcon NAWDEX Campaign Implementation Plan:


Modis TERRA corrected reflectance satellite image on 18 Oct 2012, image taken from NASA worldview