Automated Surface Observing System (ASOS)
The Automated Surface Observing System (ASOS) is the primary minute-by-minute, 24-hour weather observation system for the National Weather Service (NWS), the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), and the Department of Defense. ASOS generates the basic Aviation Routing Weather Report (METAR) and Aviation Selected Special Weather Report (SPECI). This information is essential for safe and efficient aviation operations and is used by the public to plan day-to-day activities. ASOS also provides valuable information for the hydrometeorologic, climatologic, and meteorologic research communities.
For System Test (ST) any new ASOS test software is installed on the ASOS Test Systems SP1 at the National Weather Service Headquarters (WSH), Silver Spring, MD, and ST0 at Sterling Research and Development Center (SR&DC), Sterling, VA.
The SP1 ASOS has a single Data Collection Platform (DCP) configuration and the ST0 ASOS has a three-DCP configuration. In lieu of real-time sensors interfaced to SP1, sometimes a simulator software operating on a PC ( ASENSE) is used to generate sensor data for specific test procedures. A limited production sensor is typically connected to ST0 at SR&DC."
Once ST is successfully completed, the test software is installed at an operational ASOS at Atlantic City, NJ (ACY). Test personnel at the FAA Technical Center, Atlantic City, NJ, validate FAA system interfaces to ASOS using the test software in ACY.
After successful ST and FAA system interface validation, the test software is ready for Operational Acceptance Test. A limited number of operational ASOS' are selected based upon a test objective to validate the test software for all types of ASOS configurations.