National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Two NOAA WP-3D Orions
NOAA Headquarters in Silver Spring, Maryland
Seal of the National Weather Service
NOAA engineer at work
Aerial photographer in the unpressurized cabin of a NOAA de Havilland Buffalo breathing with the assistance of an oxygen mask, operating a Wild Heerbrugg RC-8 camera
Seal of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration flag, flown as a distinguishing mark by all commissioned NOAA ships.

American scientific and regulatory agency within the United States Department of Commerce that forecasts weather, monitors oceanic and atmospheric conditions, charts the seas, conducts deep sea exploration, and manages fishing and protection of marine mammals and endangered species in the U.S. exclusive economic zone.

- National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

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United States Department of Commerce

Executive department of the U.S. federal government concerned with creating the conditions for economic growth and opportunity.

Assistants William McCracken (left) and Walter Drake (right) with Secretary Hoover (center)
Herbert Hoover listening to a radio receiver
Hoover (left) with President Harding at a baseball game, 1921

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) was created on October 3, 1970.

National Marine Fisheries Service

The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), informally known as NOAA Fisheries, is a United States federal agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce's National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) that is responsible for the stewardship of U.S. national marine resources.

National Weather Service

Agency of the United States federal government that is tasked with providing weather forecasts, warnings of hazardous weather, and other weather-related products to organizations and the public for the purposes of protection, safety, and general information.

NWS HQ in Silver Spring, Maryland
Sample maximum temperature map from the NDFD.
NWS IMET Chris Gibson taking observations in the field.
Map of NWS Weather Forecast Offices. Colors indicate area of responsibility, letters indicate each office's call sign. Alaska, Pacific and Puerto Rico offices are only indicated with call sign letters in the corners.
Meteorologists preparing a forecast, early 20th century.
National AHPS map.
The National Weather Service areas of marine weather forecasting responsibility.
Sample CPC 3.5-month temperature outlook.
An Automated Surface Observing System (ASOS).
A Cooperative Observer Program weather station.
3 m discus buoy located off the Southeast U.S. coast.
A radiosonde shortly after launch.
A NWS composite radar image of the Continental United States, composed of many regional radars.
Typical forecast office (WFO)
Specially designed hurricane-proof building constructed to house joint offices of the Houston-Galveston National Weather Service Forecast Office and the Galveston County Emergency Management Office.

It is a part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) branch of the Department of Commerce, and is headquartered in Silver Spring, Maryland, within the Washington metropolitan area.

Environmental Science Services Administration

United States Federal executive agency created in 1965 as part of a reorganization of the United States Department of Commerce.

Robert M. White, ca. 1971. He was the Administrator of ESSA throughout its existence.
Vice Admiral H. Arnold Karo was Deputy Administrator of ESSA from 1965 to 1967.
The ESSA-9 weather satellite in February 1969. It operated from February 1969 to November 1972.
The ocean survey ship USC&GS Surveyor (OSS 32) – seen during helicopter operations in the Bering Sea – was among ships in commission in the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey fleet during the years the Survey was subordinate to ESSA.
The seal of the U.S. ESSA Commissioned Officer Corps.
An ESSA flag, showing creases from having been folded.

It operated until 1970, when it was replaced by the new National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

U.S. National Geodetic Survey

"United States Coast Survey" and "United States Coast and Geodetic Survey" redirect here.

Closeup of a United States Coast and Geodetic Survey marker embedded in a large rock in front of the Noroton Volunteer Fire Department in Darien, Connecticut.
Ferdinand Rudolph Hassler was the first head of the U.S. Coastal Survey
Logo celebrating the 200th anniversary of the founding of the United States Survey of the Coast
A survey of the Mississippi River in Louisiana below Fort Jackson and Fort St. Philip made by the U.S. Coast Survey to prepare for the bombardment of the forts by David Dixon Porter's mortar fleet in April 1862 during the American Civil War.
The seal of the United States Coast and Geodetic Survey
The Richards Building, U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey headquarters, on New Jersey Avenue in Washington, D.C., from Harper's Weekly, October 1888.
Sigsbee Sounding Machine – invented by Charles Dwight Sigsbee and modified from Thomson Sounding Machine. Basic design of ocean sounding instruments stayed the same for the next 50 years. Here the sounding machine is used to set a Pillsbury current meter at a known depth. In: The Gulf Stream, by John Elliott Pillsbury, 1891. Note caption on photo: "Sounding Machine And Current Meter In Place, Steamer Blake"
A wiredrag boat in Puerto Rico in 1921
A 1932 marker at Fort McAllister Historic Park in Bryan County, Georgia.
150th anniversary commemorative stamp, issued by the United States Post Office Department in 1957.
Frank Manly Thorn served as sixth Superintendent of the Coast and Geodetic Survey.
Rear Admiral Henry Arnold Karo served as the fourth Director of the Coast and Geodetic Survey.
The United States Coast and Geodetic Survey flag, in use from 1899 to 1970
USC&GS Pathfinder (OSS 30) was transferred to the United States Navy while under construction and served in the Navy as USS Pathfinder (AGS-1) from 1942 to 1946 before being returned to the Coast and Geodetic Survey.
Pacific Marine Center, the USC&GS ship base
USC&GS Explorer (OSS 28) in the Aleutian Islands in 1944
USC&GS Oceanographer (OSS 01) was flagship of the Coast and Geodetic Survey fleet from her commissioning in 1966 until the creation of NOAA in 1970.

Since its foundation in its present form in 1970, it has been part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), of the United States Department of Commerce.

NEXRAD

NEXRAD Radar at the WSR-88D Radar Operations Center.
Testbed of the WSR-88D on display at the National Severe Storms Laboratory.
Spin-up tornado associated with a QLCS as seen from a nearby Doppler weather radar, which often goes unseen.
NEXRAD coverage below 10,000 feet
Multi-Function Phased Array Radar during installation in Norman, Oklahoma, 2003

NEXRAD or Nexrad (Next-Generation Radar) is a network of 160 high-resolution S-band Doppler weather radars operated by the National Weather Service (NWS), an agency of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) within the United States Department of Commerce, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) within the Department of Transportation, and the U.S. Air Force within the Department of Defense.

United States Fish Commission

Agency of the United States government created in 1871 to investigate, promote, and preserve the fisheries of the United States.

Flag of the United States Commissioner of Fish and Fisheries

Upon the formation of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) within the Department of Commerce on October 3, 1970, the Bureau of Commercial Fisheries merged with the saltwater laboratories of the Bureau of Sport Fisheries and Wildlife to form today's National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), an element of NOAA, and the former Bureau of Commercial Fisheries research ships were resubordinated to the NMFS.

NOAA Weather Radio

Automated 24-hour network of VHF FM weather radio stations in the United States that broadcast weather information directly from a nearby National Weather Service office.

A picture of the NOAA WR-120 EZ Weather Radio.
Public service announcement featuring comic strip character Mark Trail promoting NOAA Weather Radio
Example NOAA weather radio coverage for Eastern Michigan.

Later, the U.S. Weather Bureau adopted its current name, National Weather Service (NWS), and was operating 29 VHF-FM weather-radio transmitters under the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) which replaced ESSA in 1970.

Weather radar

Type of radar used to locate precipitation, calculate its motion, and estimate its type (rain, snow, hail etc.).

Weather radar in Norman, Oklahoma with rainshaft
Weather (WF44) radar dish
University of Oklahoma OU-PRIME C-band, polarimetric, weather radar during construction
Typhoon Cobra as seen on a ship's radar screen in December 1944.
1960s radar technology detected tornado producing supercells over the Minneapolis-Saint Paul metropolitan area.
NEXRAD in South Dakota with a supercell in the background.
A radar beam spreads out as it moves away from the radar station, covering an increasingly large volume.
The radar beam path with height
Scanned volume by using multiple elevation angles
NWS color scale of reflectivities.
Idealized example of Doppler output. Approaching velocities are in blue and receding velocities are in red. Notice the sinusoidal variation of speed when going around the display at a particular range.
Maximum range from reflectivity (red) and unambiguous Doppler velocity range (blue) with pulse repetition frequency
Radial component of real winds when scanning through 360 degrees
Targeting with dual-polarization will reveal the form of the droplet
Thunderstorm line viewed in reflectivity (dBZ) on a PPI
Typical angles scanned in Canada. The zigzags represent data angles used to make CAPPIs at 1.5 km and 4 km of altitude.
Base PPI versus Composite.
24 hours rain accumulation on the Val d'Irène radar in Eastern Canada. Notice the zones without data in the East and Southwest caused by radar beam blocking from mountains.
Vertical cross-section.
Image of an RHI.
Berrimah Radar in Darwin, Northern Territory Australia
The square in this Doppler image has been automatically placed by the radar program to spot the position of a mesocyclone. Notice the inbound/outbound doublet (blue/yellow) with the zero velocity line (gray) parallel to the radial to the radar (up right). It is noteworthy to mention that the change in wind direction here occurs over less than 10 km.
PPI reflectivity loop (in dBZ) showing the evolution of a hurricane
Map of the RIDGE presentation of 2011 Joplin tornado.
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Profiler high resolution view of a thunderstorm (top) and by a weather radar (bottom).
A supercell thunderstorm seen from two radars almost colocated. The top image is from a TDWR and the bottom one from a NEXRAD.
Reflectivity (left) and radial velocities (right) southeast of a NEXRAD weather radar. Echoes in circles are from a wind farm.
Example of strong attenuation when a line of thunderstorms moves over (from left to right images) a 5 cm wavelength weather radar (red arrow). Source: Environment Canada
1.5 km altitude CAPPI at the top with strong contamination from the brightband (yellows). The vertical cut at the bottom shows that this strong return is only above ground.
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Radar image of reflectivity with many non-weather echoes.
The same image but cleaned using the Doppler velocities.
Phased Array Weather Radar in Norman, Oklahoma
Global Express Weather radar with radome up
Nowcasting a line of thunderstorms from AutoNowcaster system
NOAA NEXRAD radar image of the Park Forest, IL, meteorite fall of 26 March 2003.

Since 2003, the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has been experimenting with phased-array radar as a replacement for conventional parabolic antenna to provide more time resolution in atmospheric sounding.

NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps

Emblem of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps
The seal of the United States Coast and Geodetic Survey, in which the NOAA Corps originated as the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey Corps in 1917.
The seal of the ESSA Corps, a predecessor of the NOAA Corps that existed from 1965 to 1970.
ESSA Corps Basic Officer Training Class 21, 9 September 1966.
NOAA Corps Combination Cap Device
NOAA Corps Device
An ODU uniform ball cap, with lieutenant commander rank insignia
NOAA Corps officers wearing service dress blues

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Commissioned Officer Corps, known informally as the NOAA Corps, is one of eight federal uniformed services of the United States, and operates under the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), a scientific agency overseen by the Department of Commerce.