As the primary reseller for FLYHT’s TAMDAR™ data, Synoptic is bringing this powerful boundary layer data set to new users and applications worldwide.

What is TAMDAR™?

FLYHT’s TAMDAR™ system is currently installed on regional aircraft from a dozen airlines serving North America, Asia, and Europe, providing tens of thousands of observations throughout the boundary layer on a daily basis. Using IRIDIUM™ satellite communications, this groundbreaking sensor measures atmospheric conditions during take-off, landing, and cruise phases of a flight, providing invaluable data in the form of soundings - vertical profiles of temperature and moisture. In addition, TAMDAR™ measures wind speed and wind direction, pressure, ice detection, and turbulence. TAMDAR™ also acts as a flight tracking mechanism that records a GPS position in both time and space with every observation.




Since the late 1930s, the gold standard for upper-air data has been the balloon-launched radiosonde. Radiosondes continue to contribute valuable information, but they are now limited to twice daily launches at 00Z and 12Z at just 92 stations across the United States (including Alaska, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico), leaving large temporal and spatial gaps in data coverage. TAMDAR™ data fills these gaps by placing sensors on commercial aircraft, so that each plane essentially becomes a radiosonde, gathering upper-air data during each portion of the flight (ascent, descent, and cruise). TAMDAR™ soundings are collected every time a plane takes off and lands, which could be 15 or more times a day, yielding thousands of soundings a day. Soundings are collected at every airport that a TAMDAR™ equipped plane flies into or out of, not just at fixed locations like radiosonde launches. In addition, TAMDAR™ measures turbulence and icing, which a radiosonde does not.


TAMDAR™ and AMDAR are similar in that they’re both aircraft-based sensors. However, AMDAR sensors only measure temperature and wind and, on a limited amount of aircraft, relative humidity. While AMDAR is installed on larger, long-haul aircraft, TAMDAR is primarily installed on shorter-range regional aircraft that make significantly more take offs and landings per day, yielding more many vertical soundings per aircraft than provided by AMDAR.

TAMDAR™ and Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP)

Numerous joint-collaborative studies between NOAA, NASA, the FAA, and the research community have been conducted on the use and efficacy of TAMDAR™ data in NWP. It has been shown that aircraft-based data reduce global NWP error by 10-20% on average. The vertical and temporal resolution for TAMDAR™ observations is completely adjustable, allowing for extremely high resolution data in the vertical during take-off and landing, where it has the most positive impact on NWP modeling, and yielding a fully customizable solution allowing greater vertical and temporal frequency than either AMDAR or radiosondes. TAMDAR™ data is delivered in real-time with no ground-based infrastructure needed, and each observation goes through rigorous quality control (both real-time and on the ground) to ensure it meets strict standards.


TAMDAR™ Parameters
Wind Speed
Wind Direction
Relative Humidity
Turbulence (EDR)
Pressure Altitude
GPS Altitude
GPS Position

To learn more about FLYHT™, visit their website.

To learn more about TAMDAR™ and how to access this data, please contact us.