Windy.com, the global weather forecasting platform, has recently partnered with German company Nowcast.de to provide nearly real-time lightning forecasts worldwide. This collaboration allows users to view lightning strikes globally, thanks to the advanced LINET (Lightning Network) detection system.
The integration of lightning data into Windy.com significantly improves its popular meteorological layers, including meteor radar and satellite imagery. Previously, Windy.com sourced its lightning data from Blitzortung, which had limited global coverage. With Nowcast.de’s partnership, Windy.com offers a comprehensive global range, with only minor exceptions in the oceans.
Lightning strikes are displayed on the map in almost real-time, with a delay of just seconds to tens of seconds between the actual strike and its appearance on Windy.com. This feature is invaluable for various outdoor activities, both recreational and professional. Users can access this functionality through Windy.com’s website and its mobile applications, available for download from the App Store and Google Play.
In addition to the lightning forecast, Windy.com has introduced other noteworthy features. One such feature is the prediction of fire risks worldwide, presented through two distinct layers. The “Fire Spread” layer provides an interactive map displaying six levels of fire spread bet based on the Canadian Fire Weather Index methodology. It considers temperature, precipitation, relative humidity, and wind conditions. The second layer, “Fuel Moisture,” predicts the likelihood of fire ignition by indicating the water content in the underlying fuel. Lower fuel moisture levels increase the chances of fire occurrence. Normal values range from 1% to 35%, with values below 15% indicating elevated fire risks and below 6% posing a potential danger of extreme fires.
These new layers play a crucial role in fire prevention and public awareness. The fire risk forecast is available up to 10 days in advance, and both layers are accessible to all users without the need for login or registration.
Windy.com’s team drives the implementation and global expansion of these features, while the scientific expertise is provided by the CzechGlobe research institute, affiliated with the Academy of Sciences. CzechGlobe is known for its projects, such as Intersucho and FireRisk, and their involvement ensures the accuracy and reliability of the fire risk forecasts.
Windy.com, developed by Ivo Lukačovič and backed by Seznam.cz, offers advanced weather forecasting through more than ten numerical models and over 60 maps. With its comprehensive coverage of weather data and the recent additions of real-time lightning forecasts and fire risk predictions, Windy.com has become an indispensable tool for users worldwide.