An Implicit Three-Dimensional Meteorological Message for Artillery Trajectory Calculation

Report No. ARL-TN-0584
Authors: Patrick A. Haines, David J. Epler II, James L. Cogan, Sean G. O'Brien, Benjamin T. MacCall, and Brian P. Reen
Date/Pages: November 2013; 18 pages
Abstract: It has been shown that the inaccuracy of meteorological (MET) information used accounts for the majority of artillery error. With MET data now being obtained from Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP), artillery inaccuracy is partially due to suboptimal utilization because the currently used single-column single-time MET profile (Computer Meteorological Message [METCM]) does not account for horizontal variation of the weather over the range of an artillery trajectory. Increased artillery targeting accuracy is expected when three-dimensional (3-D) MET information is used instead of a METCM. Moreover, operational artillery situations sometimes occur in which the midpoint location of an artillery trajectory is at an elevation well above that of the gun and the target. This necessitates a large extrapolation of the surface data at the message location that may not provide a good representation of the conditions near the gun or near the target area. An implicitly 3-D message is proposed that includes some of the horizontal variation of weather, but preserves the METCM format. It also mitigates the problems associated with extrapolation of data by reducing the height interval over which extrapolation is done.
Distribution: Approved for public release
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Last Update / Reviewed: November 1, 2013