The transition of research advances into operations (abbreviated as R2O), particularly those operations involving numerical weather prediction, satellite meteorology, and severe weather forecasting, has always been a major challenge for the atmospheric science community.
With a preeminent mission to facilitate R2O in mind, NOAA and NCAR established the DTC in 2003. Since then, the DTC has worked toward this goal in three specific ways: by providing community support for operational NWP systems, by performing testing and evaluation of promising NWP innovations, and by promoting interactions between the research and operational NWP communities via workshops, a newsletter, and a robust visitor program. Early DTC activities, which were primarily focused on evaluation of opportunities afforded by the then-new Weather Research and Forecasting model (WRF), included the testing and evaluation of two WRF model dynamic cores (one developed at NCAR and the other at EMC), rapid refresh applications; and a real-time high resolution winter forecast experiment. As a neutral party not involved with the development of either core, the DTC played a vital, independent role in these tests, especially their planning, their evaluation, and the provision of statistical results to all parties.