Mobile Sounding System

Mobile Mesonet

In addition to surface observations, upper air observations are a critical component of meteorological observations. The National Weather Service launches weather balloons twice a day from locations across the country to measure vertical profiles of temperature, pressure, humidity, and winds. These observations form the backbone of numerical weather prediction and give us a picture of what the vertical component of the atmosphere looks like. Given this importance, NSSL mobile mesonets now have the capability to launch soundings from any location at any time. The vehicles carry helium tanks in the back, and researchers can launch a balloon within a few minutes after arriving at a location.