The SAF concept: A European network approach for the generation of satellite products supporting among other purposes the prediction and assessment of natural disasters

J. Kerkmann1, Helmut Neumeister2
1EUMETSAT, Am Kavalleriesand 31, 64295 Darmstadt, Germany.
Tel.: +49-6151-807514, Fax: +49-6151-807555,
E-mail: kerkmann@eumetsat.de
2Deutscher Wetterdienst, PF 600552, 14405 Potsdam, Germany.
Tel.: +49-331-316390, Fax: +49-331-316292,
E-mail: hneumeister@dwd.d400.de

Several natural disasters are caused by certain meteorological conditions as e.g. severe storms caused by cyclones or heavy thunderstorms, hurricanes, floods, severe snow storms and icing, droughts etc. Meteorological disasters can be predicted, monitored and assessed by either applying NOWCASTING techniques or using Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) models which supply forecasts of meteorological parameters and preconditions beneficial for meteorological disasters. Satellite data are indispensable for both approaches. The Member States of EUMETSAT have developed a networked concept for the exploitation of satellite data: The SAFs - Satellite Applications Facilities - to be implemented e.g. for Nowcasting, for Ocean and Sea Ice, for NWP, for Land Surface Analysis and Climate Monitoring. With support of EUMETSAT, the Member States bring together their experiences and capacities to develop methods for extracting the relevant information from satellite data and will make them available to interested users. The SAF concept will be explained in the presentation with specific emphasis of supporting disaster detection, monitoring, forecasting and assessment.