About UFS Applications

UFS configurations that support particular forecast requirements are called applications. Each application combines a numerical model, data assimilation, post-processing, workflow, and other elements. Each distinct software element of an application is called a component.

UFS provides guidance for a set of critical forecasts that targets weather and hurricane prediction. UFS can also be configured to provide guidance for sub-seasonal and seasonal outlooks, and for specialized forecasts such as air quality and space weather.

Current UFS applications and the types of guidance they are expected to provide are listed below.


  • Medium-Range Weather

    Atmospheric behavior out to about two weeks

  • Subseasonal-to-Seasonal (S2S)

    Atmospheric and ocean behavior from about two weeks to about one year

  • Hurricane

    Hurricane track, intensity, and related effects out to about one week

  • Short-Range Weather/Convection Allowing

    Atmospheric behavior from less than an hour to several days

  • Space Weather

    Upper atmosphere geophysical activity and solar behavior out to about one month

  • Coastal

    Storm surge and other coastal phenomena out to about one week

  • Air Quality

    Aerosol and atmospheric composition out to several days

The component models currently used in the UFS are the Global Forecast System 15 (GFSv15) atmosphere, the Modular Ocean Model 6 (MOM6), the WAVEWATCH III wave model, the Los Alamos sea ice model 5 (CICE5), the Noah and Noah-MP land models, the Goddard Chemistry Aerosol Radiation and Transport (GOCART) aerosol model, the Ionosphere-Plasmasphere Electrodynamics (IPE) model, and the Advanced Circulation (ADCIRC) model for storm surge, tides, and coastal circulation.

The matrix below shows which model components (across the top) are currently used in which applications (at left).

       Atm       Land     Ocean     Sea Ice    Aerosol Ionosphere Storm Surge     Wave
Medium-Range Weather 1 0 0
S2S 0 0 0 0 0
Hurricane 0 0 0 0
Short-Range Weather 0 0
Space Weather 0 0 0
Coastal 0 0
Air Quality 0 0 0