California Department of Transportation

Integration of Aviation Automated Weather Observation Systems (AWOS) with Roadside Weather Information Systems (RWIS) - One web site


Melissa Clark

Project Description

There are about 100 AWOS (Automated Weather Observing Systems) and ASOS (Automated Surface Observing Systems) sites and a little over 100 RWIS (Roadside Weather Information Systems) sites in California. While these systems serve different user groups and are operated independently of each other, their equipment provides similar meteorological information to support safe and efficient transportation across multiple modes. Linkage consolidation of such systems will provide system managers and users (airport managers, traffic controllers, pilots) more comprehensive and accurate meteorological data and may reduce cost.

General Aviation airports often lack on-site 24 hour weather data collection and transmission capability. As more GPS-RNAV (Global Positioning System-Area Navigation) Instrument Approach Procedures are developed, the lack of on-site weather data reduces the effectiveness of such procedures by requiring higher ceiling/visibility minimums on instrument approach procedures at airports without such data. While state/ federal grants can fund AWOS acquisition, the maintenance costs often exceed airport budgets. Concurrently, state, regional and local transportation agencies are making greater use of RWIS for highway/ bridge weather information. The potential exists, given particular proximities, for RWIS resources to be shared with airports.

Current Tasks