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NOAA seeks proposals to help develop world's best weather forecast model

A Request for Proposals (RFP) will be issued on Monday, March 23, and calls for an award of up to $45 million for 5 years. Offerors have until May 11, 2020 to submit proposals. For more information, please see the EPIC Synops

NOAA is seeking a technology partner to help design and build the Earth Prediction Innovation Center (EPIC). This extramural center will accelerate scientific research and engineering to create the world’s most accurate and reliable operational weather forecast model.

NOAA is in search of proven expertise in software engineering, software infrastructure development, and the delivery of world-class support services to government, academic and industry research scientists — those who will collaborate within the EPIC structure.

Through EPIC, the United States has a unique opportunity to harness the talents of the most brilliant modelers in the world to advance operational global numerical weather prediction. Advancing our operational weather modeling capability will improveforecasts and lead to more resilient communities.”

Neil Jacobs, Ph.D., acting NOAA administrator.

EPIC is a joint effort across the Weather Enterprise (private, public and academic) to improve operational modeling skill by making it easier for developers across all sectors to collaborate using common modeling infrastructure to improve the nation’s operational weather model. This approach leverages combined skills and resources, and lowers barriers to interaction and shared ideas through the use of cloud computing and a community modeling approach called the Unified Forecast System.

The RFP is part of a major, multi-step effort to solidify NOAA’s international leadership role in weather modeling. In mid-February, NOAA announced it will triple operational supercomputing capacity. The new supercomputers will provide operational capacity to quickly transition research and development advancements, including those under EPIC, into operations at NOAA’s National Weather Service. Earlier this month, NOAA publicly released the first round of user-friendly computer codes for medium-range weather prediction. The release will enable other government, academic and industry researchers to help NOAA accelerate the transition of modeling research innovations into weather forecast operations.

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