dark vegetation in the foreground with a brilliant orange sky showing details of layered clouds in the backgroundThis course will provide an introduction to the science of fire weather and the fire weather services provided by the Bureau of Meteorology. Course participants will also practice fire weather forecasting in the Graphical Forecast Editor (GFE) system.

Duration: 2 dedicated days spread over one week
Assessment: Research project
Help: Contact James Pescott




This course is an extension to the Basic Satellite Meteorology Subject that is offered during Unit 1. New topics include:

Use of visible and infrared imagery on the forecasting shift, synthetic satellite images. Application of water vapour imagery in detecting middle and upper atmospheric turbulence. Microwave imagery, atmospheric motion vectors and the latest developments in multichannel satellite imagery.

Interactive classroom lectures and practical sessions.
Duration: 6 lectures of one hour duration each, 2 hours of practical sessions, 1 hour of revision, 2 hours of open book examination.
Assessment: Examination.
Help: Course lecturer, Bodo Zeschke

This course prepares you for forecasting hazards relating to Aviation. 
The following topics will be covered:

Plane coming out of cloud

  • Volcanic Ash
  • Airframe Icing
  • Turbulence (High and Low)
  • Low Level Wind Shear
  • Thunderstorms
  • Fog
  • Low Cloud
  • Duststorms
  • Tropical Cyclones
  • Tsunami

Duration:              11x1hr lectures; 
Assessment:      Competency: Group presentation and handout, w eekly tasks.
Help:                   Contact: Alison Cook

The Cloud Microphysics module investigates the microscopic physical processes occurring inside a cloud. It seeks to address the following theoretical question: "How do embryonic liquid and solid hydrometeors form in the atmosphere and, remarkably, increase their size by many orders of magnitude to form precipitation, in time frames as short as ten minutes?" The conclusions drawn have some very useful applications to aviation and convective forecasting (in particular).

Following a brief review of moist thermodynamics, the nucleation of liquid water droplets and the role of atmospheric aerosol in this process is examined. Various means by which liquid water droplets can grow inside a cloud are considered and in particular, their significance in the formation of precipitation size drops. This leads to a set of general conclusions regarding the microscopic structure of liquid water clouds and their likelihood of producing precipitation.

Attention then turns to sub-freezing environments and under what circumstances the nucleation of ice particles can occur in clouds. This is followed by a look at the various growth processes of ice particles and the types of frozen precipitation that can result. With the presence of ice intrinsic to the formation of lightning, a model of charge separation within a cumulonimbus cloud is presented and the role of lightning in the global electric circuit is discussed.

Several useful forecasting applications emerge. These include rules-of-thumb for the likelihood of precipitation from cumulus clouds, cloud-top-temperature constraints on the occurrence of lightning and a detailed introduction to the aviation hazard of airframe icing and the extent to which its occurrence can be forecast.

Duration: 12 hours class + 18 hours assignment/study/exam
Assessment: Assignments (1 x 30%), Exam (70%)
Help: Contact Cameron

An introductory course covering conceptual models underlying the practice of mid-latitude weather forecasting.

Areas of study include:

1. Global circulation
2. Lows and cyclogenisis 
3. Fronts and frontogenisis
4. Jets
5. High pressure systems and blocking highs Jets

Face to face
14 Lectures 
2 tutorials

1 Assignment 50%
1 Exam 50%
Contact: Tim Smith

As part of the Graduate Diploma in Meteorology, all students will need to complete this module of the course.

This module is divided into two key areas; forecasting thunderstorms and nowcasting thunderstorms.  The trainees will be introduced to the basic conceptual ingredients for thunderstorm forecasting, focussing on surface based convection, but also including elevated convection. Trainees will learn various thunderstorm modes, such as; single cells, including supercells; and multicells, including mesoconvective modes; and associated hazardous weather. In the nowcasting section, trainees will learn to use the tools to help forecast and identify a range of thunderstorms.

The module assumes sucessful completion of the following pre-requisite modules; Thermodynamics and Hydrostatics, and Radar Meteorology.

Duration: Approximately 13 one hour learning sessions and 2 practical sessions ( 3 hrs each)
Assessment: An assignment, 2 practical sessions and a 2 hour theory exam
Help: Contact Kirsty Turner

DecorativeThis course supports the delivery of the marine and oceanography courses on the Graduate Diploma of Meteorology Course. Class resources, additional activities, online assessments and links to additional resources will be added here prior to and during the delivery of the face-to-face courses.

Duration: 18h marine, 12h oceanography
Assessment: Marine quiz
Oceanography: TBA
Help: Contact:
Oceanography - Tim Forge (RAN)
Marine - David McQueen (03 9669 4793)

From forecasting turbulence in the lee of mountains, to forecasting variations in tropical weather to describing the development of mid-latitude cyclones an understanding of atmospheric wave phenomena is critical for the weather forecaster.

This course provides weather forecasters with a strong theoretical basis for forecasting the key wave phenomena in the atmosphere including:

  1. Mountain waves and rotors
  2. Rossby waves and instability
  3. Tropical waves

Rossby Waves on the Dynamic Tropopause


Face to face


16 Lectures and 3 tutorials


3 Assignments and a 3hr Exam


Contact Mick