ESRL Global Systems Division

NOAA Provides Buoy Observations in the Wake of Hurricane Katrina

When Hurricane Katrina forced the closure of NOAA's National Data Buoy Center (NDBC), the Forecast Systems Laboratory (FSL) responded quickly to restore important meteorological data. FSL's Meteorological Assimilation Data Ingest System (MADIS) surface data viewer was offered as a backup for C-MAN and buoy data while NDBC recovered from the effects of Hurricane Katrina. NDBC provides hourly observations from a network of about 90 buoys and 60 Coastal Marine Automated Network (C-MAN) stations that measure wind speed, direction, and gust; barometric pressure; and air temperature.

MADIS, which debuted in 2001, was originally developed with the goal of making integrated, quality-controlled observations easily available and usable to the greater meteorological community. FSL now supports hundreds of MADIS users, including most of the National Weather Service forecast offices, the National Climatic Data Center, the National Centers for Environmental Prediction, universities, and private companies. As in this case, MADIS can be called upon as a backup operational system in times of national emergency or need. The MADIS surface display is available at

Contact information
Name: Bill Moninger
Tel: 303-497-6435