Where could I find the caveat of AQS meteorological data

Hi all,

I’m unsure if it is good to use AQS meteorological data to evaluate model results.
I did not find the caveat of the data. Does anyone have any idea about that?

Thanks in advance.

I’ll just comment that is would be good if easily done in a less hands on process. AMET met obs matching does not work directly with AQS files.

We have not yet made it compatible with the meteorological matching part of AMET because there are so many other data in the MADIS database that AMET connects and acquires all needed obs for a WRF output. One could argue that these AQS are co-located with AQ measurements and that is better, but in almost all cases, there will be a close weather station. There is also an averaging issue that has been and still a representativeness issue. NOAA measures weather for a few minute average before the top of the hour. I believe AQS may do an hourly average.

One could preprocess AQS data into a simple text format that AMET accepts and do it that way. There is a template file with AMET on the format. Would need to update to the latest develop branch version where I updated the reader for these plain text obs input.


So, my opinion is that the meteorological data in AQS are useful as a general guide to understanding the meteorological model performance. But, they do not necessarily adhere to the same rigorous standards of the NOAA/National Weather Service measurements, in particular the siting of the measurement. This is something to be aware of when using the AQS measurements to evaluate the met performance. This is not to say that the met measurements at AQS sites are not valuable, just something to be aware of. I believe that met measurements made at NCORE sites are very good and attempt to adhere to similar standards at the NOAA/NWS measurements.

Obviously, the huge advantage of the AQS met measurements is that they are collocated with the AQ measurements, and therefore simplify the process of associating meteorological conditions to the AQ measurement. As Rob mentioned, one could use the closest NOAA measurement, but that could be some distance away, depending on where the AQS site is located.

If you want more information regarding the AQS met measurements, I suggest reaching out to someone in the Air Data group (https://www.epa.gov/outdoor-air-quality-data). They may be able to provide more details, including any “caveats” with the data.