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How AI Can Make Weather Forecasting Less Cloudy


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 Damage in Louisiana from Hurricane Zeta, one of 22 weather and climate disasters in the U.S. that did more than $1 billion of damage last year.

Artificial Intelligence is making existing weather prediction methods more efficient and contributing to increases in the speed and accuracy of forecasting, and it shows promise for tracking the paths of severe weather like tornadoes and hail with greater precision.

Credit: Bill Feig/The Advocate/Associated Press

Scientists are applying artificial intelligence (AI) to weather and climate forecasting to boost accuracy and efficiency.

The University of Oklahoma's Amy McGovern used $20 million from the U.S. National Science Foundation to launch an institute for that purpose, in partnership with six other universities and private partners.

Their intent is to use AI to augment and supplement traditional weather forecasting methods.

Machine learning also is being explored to facilitate accurate nowcasting—rapidly-computed short-term predictions that are infeasible for traditional techniques.

Stephan Rasp at startup Climate.ai cautions that much of this research is still in the proof-of-concept stage, with AI successfully applied to simplified datasets, but still lacking many examples of actually enhancing weather and climate forecasts.

From The Wall Street Journal
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