Southern Thunder 2011 Workshop a Success!!!!
The Southern Thunder 2011 Workshop was held at the National Weather Center July 11-14. The workshop brought together 44 leading lightning scientists, operational forecasters, and program managers, including participants from NOAA/NWS, NOAA/NESDIS, NOAA/SPC, NOAA/NSSL, NASA/MSFC, USAF, OU, New Mexico Tech, MIT, TAMU, Texas Tech, U. of Alabama Huntsville, U. of Maryland, Vaisala, Earth Networks, and the China Meteorological Administration, as well as several others attending the workshop remotely. It was the fourth in the series, preceded by workshops in Huntsville (2004), Fort Worth (2005), and Cocoa Beach (2009). These workshops are driven by increasing opportunities in the U.S. to observe total lightning activity (i.e., both CG and IC lightning) by means of ground-based systems in Alabama, Arizona, Florida, Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas, and the Washington, D.C. area and by a new nationwide network. The goal of these workshops is to bring together lightning data providers, product producers, and decision-making consumers in government, academia, and industry in order to (1) foster collaborations that will advance the scientific understanding of thunderstorm processes, (2) demonstrate the operational value provided by ground-based total lightning detection networks, (3) lead to development and evaluation of nowcasting and warning decision-support applications that use total lightning in an operational environment, and (4) help prepare for deployment of the GOES-R Geosynchronous Lightnning Mapper. The workshop chairman was Don MacGorman and the local organizing committee included Phillip Bothwell, Kristin Kuhlman, and William Beasley. Russ Schneider, Steve Koch, and Bill Beasley welcomed participants on behalf of NWC organizations. Linda Crank provided logistical and administrative support and was aided by Linda McGuckin, Tonia Rollins, and Kelly Lynn. Nancy Campbell handled contributions by Southern Thunder sponsors to the OU Foundation. Will Agent set up audiovisual equipment in the meeting room and arranged WebEx access for remote participants. James Murnan made CD copies of the presentations to distribute. Vicki Farmer set up online registration and data base processing. Other NWC participants included Chris Siewert, Blake Allen, David Andra, Mike Foster, Matt Elliot, Alexandre Fierro, Erica Griffin, Ben Herzog, Valliappa Lakshmanan, Ted Mansell, Madison Miller, Stuart Miller, Danyal Petersen, Dave Rust, Travis Smith, Terry Schuur, and Greg Stumpf.