An external view of the Met Office building at night.

Nigel Atkinson

Areas of expertise

  • Operational satellite data pre-processing.

  • Development of pre-processing software.

  • Calibration of microwave radiometers.

  • Future satellite sensors.

Publications by Nigel

Current activities

Nigel is manager of the ATOVS and AVHRR Pre-processing Package (AAPP) which is a software package maintained by the NWP SAF on behalf of EUMETSAT. The package has several hundred users world-wide. The package transforms raw "direct broadcast" data from the NOAA and MetOp satellites into calibrated, geolocated radiances. He also leads the development of NWP SAF pre-processors for microwave imagers and for the new InfraRed Sounder (IRS) on EPS-SG.

He is responsible for the operational pre-processing of sounder data in the Met Office. In this context, pre-processing refers to data processing operations that take place prior to storage in the meteorological database and subsequent use in numerical weather prediction. Pre-processing can include calibration, format conversion, re-mapping, monitoring, etc.

Nigel is actively involved in the International TOVS Working Group and the Direct Broadcast Network (DBNet) project. He has also contributed to studies on the requirements for future instruments on EPS-SG and MTG, and is a member of EUMETSAT science advisory groups for these missions.

Career background

Nigel joined the Met Office in 1982, following a physics degree at Oxford University. For the first 6 years he was involved in the development of aircraft and balloon instrumentation for cloud physics and atmospheric chemistry research. From 1988-1990 he worked with the then newly-developed Arrival Time Difference (ATD) lightning location system, and more recently has been involved with updating the hardware and software of this system.

In 1990 Nigel joined the remote sensing group that was responsible for the procurement, pre-launch calibration and post-launch support of the AMSU-B series of microwave radiometers. He assumed his current role in 2003.