WMO Center of Excellence
The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) in conjunction with the world's producers of operational meteorological satellites have established Centers of Excellence (CoE) worldwide for maximum utilization of satellite data for environmental applications, research and strong and continuous training programs.
Operational meteorological research and development environmental satellites provide essential data for meteorology, climatology including global change, hydrology, oceanography, and other applications to World Meteorological Organization (WMO) members worldwide. A wide variety of environmental applications are growing steadily due to the introduction of new satellites equipped with new systems. Several varieties of environmental information are available from the Global Observation System and members are encouraged to strive for full exploitation of the program. In order to accommodate the rapidly increasing sophisticated and diverse users, updated and improved methods must be developed. Maximum utilization of satellite data for environmental applications entails research and a strong and continuous training component.
Meeting the demands of this challenge is possible through the combined effort of the WMO and the world's producers of operational meteorological satellites through the Coordination Group for Meteorological Satellites (CGMS) in the formation of the Virtual Laboratory for Training in Satellite Meteorology (VL). The VL is a network system of meteorological satellite operators and 12 Centers of Excellence (CoE) at WMO Regional Meteorological Training Centers in Niamey, Niger; Muscat, Oman; Nairobi, Kenya; Pretoria, South Africa; Moscow, Russia; Beijing, China; Nanjing, China; Melbourne, Australia; Cordoba, Buenos Aires, Argentina; Cachoeira, Paulista, Brazil; Bridgetown, Barbados; and San Jose, Costa Rica. The satellite operators are NESDIS (USA), EUMETSAT (Europe), CMA (China), JMA (Japan), CONAE (Argentina) and INPE (Brazil).
· The 7th World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Center of Excellence (CoE), Muscat, was inaugurated at SQU in February 2006. The Center is coordinated by the Directorate General of Meteorology and Air Navigation (Civil Aviation Affairs) and the SQU Remote Sensing and GIS Center. The CoE’s activities are well supported by European Organization for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites (EUMETSAT).
· Some 150 weather forecasters and environmental scientists from the Arab and southwest Asian countries have been trained since the establishment of the CoE in Oman.
· Among some of the CoE activities is a yearly two weeks workshop on EUMETSAT Satellite Applications sponsored by EUMETSAT.