NRL's Jeff Hawkins Recognized by American Meteorological Society

2/2/2005 - 10-05r
Contact: Public Affairs Office, (202) 767-2541

Mr. Jeff Hawkins, a scientist in the Naval Research Laboratory's Marine Meteorology Division has received a Special Act Award from the American Meteorological Society (AMS) for "his major efforts in promoting and developing the near real-time distribution of global tropical satellite meteorological data and scientific products."

Mr. Hawkins is head of the Satellite Meteorological Applications Section at NRL in Monterey, California. He has worked extensively on many aspects of remote sensing and tropical meteorology for much of his scientific career, ranging from early hands-on experience with NOAA's Hurricane Research Division, where he participated in hurricane flights (see NRL press release 49-04r), to oceanographic remote sensing applications work with the Ocean Sciences Group of NRL at Stennis Space Center, to his current position at NRL in Monterey.

The AMS Special Act Award recognizes Mr. Hawkins' efforts in advancing the use of meteorological satellite data for tropical meteorological applications. During the late 1990s, Mr. Hawkins' team, consisting of Mr. Tom Lee, Dr. Joe Turk, Mr. Kim Richardson, Mr. Charles Sampson and Mr. John Kent (SAIC), began development of the now popular NRL Tropical Cyclone Webpage (TC-Web). The TC-Web was designed to automatically process near real-time satellite data and produce a variety of products to cover all TC activity of interest, by autonomously parsing all TC position locations provided by the NRL-developed Automated Tropical Cyclone Forecast (ATCF) system feed via operational tropical forecast centers.

The TC-Web specifically emphasizes the distribution of passive microwave satellite imagery and value-added products, such as data from the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program (DMSP) Special Sensor Microwave Imager (SSMI). Passive microwave data permits an improved knowledge of tropical cloud cyclone position and intensity compared to the more traditionally used visible/infrared imagery. NRL was also one of the first users of the near real-time data from the joint US-Japanese Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission satellite. The TC-Web has become an important source of nowcast imagery for worldwide tropical cyclone activity, providing vital products to DOD's Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC), NOAA's National Hurricane Center, and the Navy's Fleet Numerical Meteorology and Oceanography Center, which now supports the TC-Web operationally. TC-Web is also heavily utilized by other national and international forecasters and emergency planners, as evidenced by communications received from World Meteorological Organization (WMO) TC centers ranging from Australia and Japan to La Reunion Island in the Indian Ocean. The TC-Web has continued to grow in usage and popularity as data from more recent sensors, such as the NRL-developed Coriolis Windsat, are constantly being added. The TC-Web is a well-recognized example of the Navy's commitment to research aimed at utilizing advanced satellite data for transitions to operational meteorological and oceanographic applications.

Mr. Hawkins received his bachelor's and master's degrees in meteorology from Florida State University. He worked at NOAA from 1979 to 1980. He worked on satellite oceanography at the Naval Oceanographic Research & Development Activity (NORDA) at Stennis Space Center, Mississippi, from 1980 to 1992. Mr. Hawkins joined the Naval Oceanographic and Atmospheric Research Lab (NOARL) in 1992 and moved to Monterey, the same year NOARL became a part of NRL.

Mr. Hawkins received the Navy's Meritorious Civilian Service Award in 1999 and a NASA Group Achievement Award in 2003. He was named a Fellow of the AMS in 2003. He is a member of AMS, IEEE Geoscience and Remote Sensing Society, the American Geophysical Union, and The Oceanography Society.

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