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About the LAMP Forecast

Frequently Asked LAMP Forecast Questions:

What does LAMP stand for?

It's not just a bright idea. LAMP is the Localized Aviation MOS Program.

Designed to provide hour-by-hour forecast data for the next 25 hours, based on the GFS-MOS (used for the 3day 4cast) and current METAR readings. LAMP forecasts update every hour and are focused on weather details of interest to pilots and are designed to help write the TAF forecasts.

LAMP is a statistical system which provides hourly forecast guidance. The LAMP system consists of a series of programs to analyze hourly weather data, run numerical models, evaluate statistical forecast equations, and display the results. The forecasts are produced on an NCEP supercomputer combining information from the central GFS-MOS guidance, local model output, and the most recent hourly surface observations.

GFS-LAMP guidance updates each hour using the latest observations to creates forecasts for over 1500 stations in the continental US, Hawaii, Alaska, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands with a record of hourly data. LAMP provides hourly forecasts for 25 hours at locations currently receiving GFS-MOS guidance.

What data elements does LAMP report?

The official list and description of LAMP data is here. How they are implemented on Blastvalve is shown below:

  • Wind Direction = forecasts of the wind direction 33 feet above ground level (agl) at the hour, given in tens of degrees. Wind direction is relative to True North.
  • Wind Speed = forecasts of the wind speed 33 feet agl at the hour, given in knots.
  • Wind Gusts = forecasts of any wind gust 33 feet agl at the hour, given in knots.  Shown as a darker bar on top of Wind Speed when gusts are forecast. If no gusts are shown with Wind Speed it means that no gust is forecast.

  • Temp = surface temperature valid at that hour.
  • Dewpoint = surface dewpoint valid at that hour.

  • Clouds = forecast categories of total sky cover valid at that hour.
  • Ceiling = ceiling height forecast at the hour.
  • Visibility = visibility forecast at the hour.
  • Obscuring Vision = obstructions to vision forecast at the hour. Displayed beneath Visibility in the same box. Blank when visibility is good.

  • Precip During Hour = probability of precipitation occurring on the hour.  The precipitation need not be measurable.
  • Bolded Text for Precip During Hour = categorical forecast of yes (Y) [text bolded] or no (N) [normal text] indicating if precipitation, not necessarily measurable, will occur on the hour.
  • Type of Precip = conditional precipitation type at the hour.  This category forecast is conditional on precipitation occurring. Shown beneath Precip During Hour in same box. If the chance of precip is less than 5% then we don't show the type of precip on Blastvalve.
  • Precip Over 6 Hours = probability of measurable precipitation (PoP) during a 6-h period ending at the next hour. Blank when data is not available for that time period.

  • Thunder Over 2 Hours = probability of thunderstorms during the 2-hr period ending at the next hour. For the first several hours the 2 hour forecast periods overlap.
  • Bolded Text for Thunder Over 2 Hours = categorical forecast of yes (Y) [text bolded] or no (N) [normal text] indicating if thunderstorms will occur during the 2-hr period shown.

  • Not Shown on Blastvalve: the original LAMP data contains 4 additional elements not displayed in the Blastvalve version. These are POZ, POS, CCG, CVS. These are for the probability of freezing precip, snow, ceiling during precip, and visibility during precip. You can see these forecasts in the raw data on the NWS site.

How can I see the raw data ?

The NWS publishes LAMP data on the web. You can select the location you want and see the current LAMP data here. There is also a LAMP meteogram, which uses graphs to display the data.

Where do I find a list of LAMP forecast locations?

The official list of LAMP forecast locations is here. If you find a location with LAMP forecasts that is not included on my menus, please email me and I'll add them when I have some free time.

When is the data effective? When is it for?

Most items are what the weather is expected to be AT the hour, not for the whole hour. For Precip Over 6 Hours & Thunder it is the percentage chance for the entire time frame shown by the box.

Where can I learn more?

A few articles you may want to read are Using LAMP Guidance in Flight Planning [PDF] and a Powerpoint Presentation called An Introduction to the Localized Aviation MOS Program (LAMP) [PPT]. There is a LAMP documentation page here with links to lots more reading.

What is the source of the weather data?

The source material is the National Weather Service's LAMP product. This NWS material incorporated is not subject to copyright protection. The translation and arrangement is copyright by Rick Jones. Additionally some weather graphics are provided by and copyrighted by Intellicast, including Radar and Wind Forecasts.

How do I report a problem?

If you encounter bugs in this website, please write me at wxfeedback@blastvalve.com with the details so I can try to work it out. If you don't like the weather, you'll need to contact a higher power.


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