Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Dot Gov

The .gov means it’s official.
Federal government websites often end in .gov or .mil. Before sharing sensitive information, make sure you’re on a federal government site.


The site is secure.
The https:// ensures that you are connecting to the official website and that any information you provide is encrypted and transmitted securely.

Home » About » Mission and Vision

Mission and Vision

The Global Systems Laboratory (GSL) of the Earth System Research Laboratories (ESRL) conducts world-class applied research and directed development resulting in technology transfer of environmental data, models, products, and services that enhance environmental understanding with the outcome of supporting commerce, supporting NWS in protecting life and property, and promoting a scientifically literate public.

Vision Statement: “Research today for better forecasts tomorrow”

Core Competencies

Statutory Authority and/or Charge Under NOAA Strategic Plan

GSL is aligned under Weather Research and Forecasting Innovation Act of 2017 (Pub.L 115-25, H.R. 353), NOAA’s Weather Ready Nation goal, and the NOAA Ocean and Atmospheric Science Education Program (33 USC 893a). GSL's research specifically addresses the objectives to:

Science Themes and Research Areas

Perform research and development of regional and global Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) models and data assimilation techniques for research applications and operational forecasting using convection allowing models including the FV3 dynamic core. Perform evaluations of existing and new observations and assimilate new data into weather prediction models.

Develop environmental information systems with tools for collecting, processing, displaying, sharing, and disseminating environmental data for use by forecasters, analysts, and researchers.

Develop decision-support systems to provide information needed to enable decision-makers to utilize and improve high-impact weather and water forecasts, in order to mitigate aviation hazards, recognize and advise public on potential adverse health impacts due to air quality, support the renewable energy industry, and reduce loss of life and property. Integrate social science into the development process.

Explore new hardware and software technologies to run high-resolution weather models more quickly and accurately on High-Performance Computing systems (HPC). Research includes working with modelers during development to ensure that software is designed to take advantage of the latest developments in HPC system architectures.

Products and Results

Among the list of technologies (e.g., numerical weather models, numerical modeling algorithms, high- performance computing system tools, information systems, observing systems) transferred from GSL to operations or applications in NOAA, other agencies, and the private sector, are:

1) Modeling

2) Forecasting tools

3) Science Education

4) Atmospheric science for renewable energy


GSL's primary customer is the NOAA National Weather Service (NWS). Modeling and data assimilation work is a collaborative effort with National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) (including Environmental Modeling Center, Storm Prediction Center, and Weather Prediction Center) and other laboratories toward delivery of operational forecast model improvements and next-generation models that support both operational forecasting and research applications. Information systems work includes design and development of systems and components that allow weather forecasters to display and interpret meteorological information and enable collaboration among Weather Forecast Offices.

GSL has a long-standing collaborative research and development relationship with the FAA to achieve improved weather forecasting, verification, and visualization capabilities for the broad aviation community.

Other customers include other NOAA laboratories, National Weather Service, NCAR, DHS, USDA, DOI, DOD, NASA, DOE, non-profit organizations, educational institutions, private sector, and international agencies.

Future Directions

During the next five to ten years, GSL will continue to support NOAA in the following areas: