National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Aircraft Operations Center Aircraft Operations Center
Aircraft Operations Center

The airplanes and helicopters of the Aircraft Operations Center (AOC) are flown in support of NOAA's mission to promote global environmental assessment, prediction and stewardship of the Earth's environment. NOAA's aircraft operate throughout the United States and around the world; over open oceans, mountains, coastal wetlands, and Arctic pack ice. These versatile aircraft provide scientists with airborne platforms necessary to collect the environmental and geographic data essential to their research.

NOAA demonstrates a challenging and multi-disciplinary approach to meeting the responsibilities as the "Earth Systems Agency". The Aircraft Operations Center provides capable, mission-ready aircraft and professional crews to the scientific community wherever and whenever they are required. Whether studying global climate change or acid rain, assessing marine mammal populations, surveying coastal erosion, investigating oil spills, flight checking aeronautical charts, or improving hurricane prediction models, the AOC flight crews continue to operate in some of the world's most demanding flight regimes.

Get On Board The Hurricane Hunter
Imagine eight computer work stations linked to some of the world's most advanced climate-probing equipment, slicing through the air at low altitudes hammered by hurricane-force winds, buffeted by bliding rain and breakneck ... <more>

Hurricane Hunters Go Where Others Fear to Fly
Riding the storm out takes on a whole new meaning for a few admitted adrenaline junkies who take to the skies when a hurricane turns deadly and stare straight into the face of the danger... <more>

NOAA Experiment Aims to Improve Winter Storm Forecasts Along Westcoast
High winds, heavy rain and extreme surf conditions have already battered West Coast residents this winter, and NOAA researchers hope a new experiment will give them an edge over the storms. This week's experiment ... <more>

BRACE Study Launched to Determine Influence of Air Pollution on Water Quality in Tampa Bay
The Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) today announced that May 1 will begin a month-long series of intensive studies to determine the level of influence of nitrogen deposited into Tampa Bay from local and regional sources of air pollutants on water quality. <more>

Snow Survey in the Last Frontier
Beginning in 2002, the NWS embarked on a ground-breaking survey in this country’s 49th state. Alaska became the newest addition to a long list of states where snow is surveyed by an office of the NWS called NOHRSC (National Operational Hydrologic Remote Sensing Center). <more>

2002 Mid Atlantic Bottlenose Dolphin Aerial Surveys
Along the eastern seaboard of the United States there exists a coastal migratory stock or population of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). This nomadic stock of dolphins moves north and south along the coastline depending on the season and water temperature. <more>

Atlantic Right Whale Photogrammetry
In the study of biological systems we learn most about plants and animals buy collecting specimens of various ages, measure them weight them, check their sex, get their age at maturity, feed them and measure growth rates etc. <more>

Winter Storm Reconnaissance Program
In the short, 0 48 hour lead time range forecasts over the Pacific coastal area are adversely affected by the sparsity of in situ observations over the upstream northeast Pacific basin. The relative disadvantage of the west coast areas arising from their geographical location can be ameliorated by enhancements in the observational network over the northeast Pacific. <more>

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