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Every day, millions of weather – based economic decisions are made in transportation, agriculture, power, construction, and other sectors of the economy. Weather conditions affect the entire economy in many ways both directly and indirectly, Better weather forests bring economic opportunities to almost every sector of the economy.
Weather forecasts re critical to the commercial and private transportation sector, including airline, shipping and trucking industries, nationally and internationally. Airlines, for example rely on short term forecasts to best position their aircraft and adjust flight routes.
1.1. BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
The art of weather forecasting began with early civilizations using reoccurring astronomical and metrological events to help them monitor seasonal changes in the weather (MISTIC House, 2008) Around 650 BC the Babylonians tried to predict short term weather changes based on the appearance of clouds and optical phenomena such as haloes. By 300B.C Chinese astronomers had developed a calendar that divided the year into 24 festivals, each festival associated with a different type of weather.
Around 340 B.C the Greek Philosopher Aristotle wrote Metrological, a philosophical treatise that included theories about the formation of rain, clouds, hail, wind, thunder, lightening, and hurricanes. In addition, topics such s astronomy, geography and chemistry were also addressed. Aristotle made some remarkably acute observations concerning the weather, along with some significant errors. And his four–volume text was considered by many to be the authority of weather theory for almost 200 years. Although many of Aristotle’s claims were erroneous, it was not until about 17th century that many of his ideas were overthrown. Throughout the centuries, attempts have been made to produce forecasts based on weather lore and personal observations.
However, by the end of the Renaissance, it had become increasingly evident that the speculations of the natural philosophers were inadequate and that greater knowledge of the necessary to further our understanding of the atmosphere (Wilson,2007). In order to do these instruments were needed to measure the properties. The atmosphere, such as moisture, temperature, and pressure. The first known design in western civilization for a hygrometer an instrument to measure the humidity of air was described by Nicholas Cusa (C.1401 – 1464, German) in the mid fifteenth century. Galileo Galilsi (1564 – 1642, Italian) invented an early thermometer in 1592 or shortly thereafter, and Evangelista Torricelli (1608 – 1647, Italian invented the barometer for measuring atmospheric pressure in 1643.
While these meteorological instruments were being refined during the seventeenth through nineteenth centuries, other related observational theoretical and the technological developments also contributed to our knowledge of the atmosphere, and individuals at scattered locations began to make and record atmospheric measurements. The invention of the telegraph and the emergence of telegraph networks in the mid nineteenth century allowed the routine transmission of weather observations to and from observers and compilers. Using these data, crude weather maps were drawn and surface wind patterns and storm systems could be identified and studied. Weather observing stations began appearing all across the globe, eventually spawning the birth of synoptic weather forecasting, based on the compilation and analysis many observations taken simultaneously over a wide area, in the 1860s.
With the formation of regional and global metrological observation networks in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, more data were becoming available for observation based weather forecasting. A great stride in monitoring weather at high at altitudes was made in the 1920s with the invention of the radiosonde. Small light weight boxes equipped with weather instruments and a radio transmitter, radiosondes are carried high into the atmosphere by a hydrogen or helium – filled balloon that ascends to an altitude of about 30 kilometers before bursting (Gaffen, 2008). During the ascent, these instruments transmit temperature moisture, and pressure data (Called soundings) back to ground station. Three, the data are processed and made available for constructing weather maps or insertion into computer models for weather prediction. Today, radiosondes are launched every twelve (12) hours from hundreds of ground stations all over the world.
1.2 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The objectives of this research work are as follows:
i. To help aviation meteorologists issue accurate weather forecast.
ii. To enable aviation meteorologists issue weather forecast with minimum delay.
iii. To enable Aviation industry to make decision on flight control based on information given.
iv. To study and use advance programming language as logical tool for forecasting weather conditions.
v. To make sure of effective analysis, design implementation, and also provide solution to state problems in Aviation weather forecast.
1.3 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The current method of weather forecasting in the Aviation industry impeded by the following problems
i. Inaccuracy issue of weather forecast
ii. Delay from the head quarters (meteorological services Headquarters in Lagos) in forecasting weather conditions.
iii. The use of manual methods in weather forecast and also in storing or keeping recordings of previous measurements of weather elements and its analysis
1.4 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
The scope of this project will be to design workable easy to use and reliable software package used to forecast weather conditions for Aviation industry (Sam Mbakwe Airport).
The scope of this project design extends to the following range and deals with the total automation of the following:
i. The data entry section which facilitates easy entry of data obtained from measurements of various instruments.
ii. The data base: the data entered is stored in a data base for record purpose and also for easy sorting of a particular record(s)
iii. The weather analysis: This analyses a given record of daily weather measurements and also permits the statistics of the data to be viewed.
iv. The weather forecast: The impact of weather and its remarks is stated.
1.5 SIGNIFICANT OF THE STUDY
The significant of this study is to design a weather forecasting package for Aviation industry that would provide information concerning the weather conditions on a daily basis, and information would be useful for
i. Aircraft landing
ii. Aircraft take-off
iii. Making decisions on route changes and inconveniences; and
iv. Discomfort arising from altitudinal changes in flight.
1.6 LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY
One of the limitations the researcher encountered was the difficulty in getting information and relevant facts about the current system from the staff of the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NIMET), Imo Airport.
Another limitation encountered by the researcher is financial constraints, especially in transport fare to the area of study for the collection of data and also the cost of getting information from relevant journals, books materials printed - out from internet, etc.
Finally, lack of relevant textbooks related to the study useful making citations.
1.7 DEFINITION OF TERMS
Ø Beaufort scale: A scale that indicates the wind seed using the effect wind has on certain familiar objects.
Ø DRIZZLE: A form of precipitation that consists of water droplets less than 5mm.
Ø FOG: water that has condensed closed to ground level, producing cloud of very small droplets that reduces visibility to less than one km (three thousand and three hundred feet).
Ø LIGHTNING: Any and all forms of visible electrical discharged produced by thunder storms.
Ø METEOROLOGY: The study of the phenomena of the atmosphere and all the processes that take place in the atmosphere and the relationships with processes at the surface of the earth.
Ø RADIOSONDE: A balloon carrying instruments for measuring conditions in the upper atmosphere.
Ø RAIN: A type of precipitation that is in the form of water droplets larger than 0.5mm.
Ø SNOW: Precipitation composed of white or translucent ice crystals. Snow forms in cold clouds by the direct transfer of water vapor to ice TAUNDERSTORM (or thundershower) - A local storm, produced by a cumulonimbus cloud, and accompanied by thunder and lightning.
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