NEWS AND ACTIVITIES (in reverse chronological order)
During January and February 2010 the CAT-II RFCs installed the new CHPS hardware; OCWWS HSD subsequently installed the FEWS infrastructure software on these machines (known as chps1, chps2, and chps3).
Purchase of the second set of prototype hardware for the CAT RFCs and the first set of hardware for the CAT-II RFCs was initiated in June. Delivery is expected to be in early October 2009.
CHPS "prototype" hardware was delivered to the CAT RFCs in October 2008. Deltares and OCWWS HSD traveled to NERFC to conduct the installation and to develop installation instructions for the remaining CAT RFCs. The hardware consists of 3 servers:
Master Controller (MC)
Forecasting Shell Server (FSS)
These 3 servers together comprise an "Online Standby" system; another 3-server hardware suite to be added in 2009 will form the "Online Duty" system. The Operator client software will run on existing AWIPS workstations. Together these form the prototype operational hardware for CHPS. Plans to evolve from the CHPS prototype hardware to AWIPS baseline hardware have still to be worked out between OHD and OS&T.
In November Randy Rieman (OCWWS HSD) traveled to NERFC to install the hardware and finalize installation instructions in the form of an AWIPS-like "mod note". The instructions were then used by the other CAT RFCs to install their hardware locally.
In early December Randy Rieman and Xiaobiao Fan (also OCWWS HSD) traveled with Frederik van den Broek (Deltares) to NERFC to learn how to install the FEWS server software on the new prototype hardware. Having successfully mastered the necessary skills, Randy went on to install the FEWS software at NWRFC later in the month. Installations for ABRFC and CNRFC are scheduled for January.
Based on specifications provided by Deltares, the CAT agreed on a suite of hardware for the CHPS prototype system to be deployed at the CAT RFCs.
The purpose of this hardware purchase is to:
The NOAA Hydrology Program has provided funds for systems at four RFCs, each comprising one server for the Master Controller (MC), one server for the Forecasting Shell Server (FSS), and one server for the Database. The Operator client software will run on existing AWIPS workstations. These are the basic components of a FEWS-based system with no failover or offline testing capabilities. The hardware has been procured; delivery is expected in October.
- provide insight into the performance requirements for CHPS, and help define the delta between NWSRFS and CHPS performance
- provide technical requirements for OSIP project 07-059 (RFC AWIPS configuration)
- provide additional computing power for all RFCs as they undergo migration from NWSRFS to CHPS (i.e., while running both) so as not to disturb operations or the AWIPS II project
Through the OSIP mechanism, OHD will initiate discussions with OS&T on an approach for AWIPS hardware configurations to meet RFC needs in a CHPS environment, with an eye to the future (e.g., to accommodate XEFS and DHM).
Deltares delivered to the CAT a proposed set of hardware specifications, based on their understanding of CHPS, their practical experiences in Europe with Delft-FEWS, and their hardware experiments. The specifications were discussed at the end of May and again during the June workshop. Results will ultimately be fed into OSIP project 07-059, "RFC AWIPS Configuration", which addresses future RFC hardware requirements in a post-AWIPS II environment (including AWIPS II Extended/CHPS).
Meanwhile the Hydrology Program has agreed to fund the cost of the initial CHPS hardware for the CAT RFCs since deadlines for the CHPS schedule are all too tight for AWIPS to respond in time. OHD has submitted to NOAA Procurement a request for quotes based on final specifications drawn up by OHD, OCWWS, and Deltares for a partial system (i.e., without a duty standby, and without an offline system). Our goal is to install this partial CHPS system at CAT sites in October 2008.
An approach for purchasing the final hardware configuration at CAT RFCs - as well as for the remaining 9 RFCs - has yet to be developed. OHD expects a lot of work is needed to convince the AWIPS Program to re-engineer a separate RFC hardware baseline and possibly augment its capability. This will be exacerbated by the move towards more aggressive numerical modeling such as the eXperimental Ensemble Forecast System (XEFS) and DHM.