High-Resolution, Stratospheric Variability and Dispersion Modeling for Assessing Collateral Effects of Hazardous Releases

Period of Performance: 05/12/2000 - 12/12/2000


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Spectral Sciences, Inc.
4 Fourth Avenue Array
Burlington, MA 01803
Principal Investigator


This proposal addresses DTRA's need for characterizing the natural variability of weather and determining the uncertainty of dispersion calculations for accurate assessments of collateral effects from hazardous releases in the upper-troposphere /stratosphere. The transport in the stratosphere, and the exchange between it and the troposphere, can pose a long-term and/or long-distance hazard - as well as a large source of uncertainty in the upper troposphere. We propose to develop an innovative model, which will provide high-resolution predictions of weather and dispersions in the stratosphere. Additional advantages of this model include flexibility in coupling with other types of weather products and its ability to efficiently perform long-duration, physically-robust calculations - making it an important tool for assessing uncertainties in the current models. In Phase I, we will develop the model with relevant physics and chemistry and fully explore the parameter space necessary for accurately modeling the stratosphere. This work will lead to a better understanding of variability and dispersion behavior in the stratosphere and in the upper troposphere. In Phase II, we will extend the model to serve as a fully operational numerical weather prediction model, which can be coupled with DTRA's current tropospheric model. The Phase II/III software will have immediate numerical weather prediction and dispersion modeling applications for DTRA, as well as for DOE, NASA, academic, and commercial programs. Commercial uses are anticipated in prediction of the dispersion of effluents from nuclear accidents, volcanoes, and asteroid impacts; global environmental monitoring, such as from large power and manufacturing plants and from high altitude airplanes; improved hurricane and tornado predictions; and global circulation modeling for other planets.