MeteoExplorer (ME) Touch

The world first touch-oriented meteorological software optimized for Windows 8/RT

MeteoExplorer Touch, based on the technology of desktop MeteoExplorer software,is a professional software for analyzing and visualizing scientific data. It is also the world first touch-oriented meteorological software optimized for Microsoft’s Windows 8 and Windows RT operating system. MeteoExplorer touch emphasizes performance by following native C++ development and tapping DirectX hardware acceleration rendering technology. It is also designed to be a productivity tool that makes no compromise in implementing its features. Indeed, it provides more than 70% features offered by MeteoExplorer. Moreover, by taking advantage of the touch-oriented functionalities in Windows 8/RT, MeteoExplorer Touch brings an all-new experience for atmospheric science researchers and professionals to process meteorological data on their mobile devices as well as PCs.

MeteoExplorer in action
Screenshot of MeteoExplorer Touch running on Microsoft Surface Pro tablet.

Technical advantages (top 3 reasons to choose ME touch)

  1. With the design targeting mobile devices and tablet computers, MeteoExplorer touch brings an all-new touch-oriented experience for processing scientific data.

    Over the past couple of years, the industry of information technology has enjoyed a fast paced evolution, in which mobile computing devices such as smart phones and tablet computers have formed a new computing platform that is as important as traditional personal computers like desktop and laptop computers. There mobile devices, with the advantages of being convenient to carry, long standby time, and an intuitive touch-oriented manipulations, have been playing more and more roles in both personal and enterprise computing.

    In the field of atmospheric science and geographic information science (GIS), software support is the key for these all-new mobile computing devices to play their parts. It is necessary to port existent software applications that target desktop computers to mobile devices.

    First of all, most of the desktop meteorological or GIS applications fail to run on the mobile devices, mainly due to the restriction of mobile operating systems and insufficient power of mobile hardware.

    Next, traditional meteorological or GIS applications are designed with mouse and keyboard as primary input devices. Even though they can run on some operating system that offer backward compatibilities like Windows 8, they might not work well on devices with touch and stylus as main input devices.

    Third, mobile devices are usually less powerful than desktop and server computers in terms of the hardware specifications. Mobile devices have slower processor, less capacity of memory, and underpowered graphics unit. As a result, traditional desktop applications may not provide awesome user experience if they are not optimized for mobile devices.

    In all, it is necessary to port traditional desktop applications to mobile devices. MeteoExplorer touch is such an endeavor to port desktop-oriented MeteoExplorer to Windows 8 and Windows RT. With this experiment, we hope to bring a pleasant experience to meteorological researchers and professionals when they manipulate data in their mobile devices.

    MeteoExplorer Touch meets the requirement of Windows store application, and has succeeded in passing the Windows store certification.

  2. MeteoExplorer touch manages to bring fast runtime performance by following native C++ development and tapping DirectX hardware acceleration rendering technology.

    With the rapid development of atmospheric science and meteorological technologies, researchers and professionals demand their productivity tools to be capable of delivering higher efficiency and graphics rendering performance, that is, they hope the tools can analyze and visualize more volume data in less time. With these requirements in mind, MeteoExplorer Touch is designed to emphasize performance from the very beginning, and to hopefully bring fluid user experience and promote working productivity of users. In practical implementation, we choose C++ for native development, instead of interpreted programming languages such JAVA, C# and Visual Basic, to maximize program performance, while as the same time reduce application requirements for system resources. In addition, we make use of DirectX 11 hardware acceleration technology to enhance graphics rendering speed. Both of the approach aim to bring fast, fluid user experience.

  3. MeteoExplorer Touch is designed to be a productivity tool that make no compromise in providing features

    Thanks to the cross-platform, modular design principle that backs the desktop MeteoExplorer technology, MeteoExplorer Touch is capable of providing most of the features in desktop MeteoExplorer. This is in sharp contrast to the facts that the mobile version of some meteorological or GIS software is just a picture or text viewer. In summary, the table below gives a comparison of the features provided by MeteoExplorer and MeteoExplorer Touch,where the symbol ● represents the feature is implemented, and symbol ○ represents the feature is not implemented.

    Feature MeteoExplorer MeteoExplorer Touch
    Unified 2D-3D rendering
    Graphics layers management
    Objective analysis of physical elements in surface observation data and upper-air soundings data
    Isoline analysis and shading of gridded data
    Streamline analysis of wind field
    Computation of physics indices and variables from basic variables (pressure, temperature, wind etc.)
    GRIB1/GRIB2 data process and display
    NetCDF data process and display
    GrADS data process and display
    MICAPS data process and display
    Satellite nephogram data display and animation
    Map projection and clipping
    Scene manipulation (zoom, pan, and rotate), Zoom to area
    Save screen shot as image file
    Vector graphics exported to clipboard or saved as EMF file ○ [1]
    Multiple languages support in user interface
    User customized menu ○ [2]
    Creation of cross-section graphics
    Interactive composition of synoptic chart
    Meso-scale synoptic chart analysis


    1. As Windows runtime API does not support GDI technology any more, the feature of exporting to EMF vector graphics is not available.
    2. In Windows runtime, a Windows store application can only get access to file system via file picker contract. Therefore, MeteoExplorer Touch could not open files specified in user-customized menus.

    As can be seen from the table, MeteoExplorer Touch implemented more than 70% features provided by its desktop cousin MeteoExplorer. The reasons for the denoted missing features are the restriction of Universal Windows Program (UWP) API

Feature list

  • Graphics layer management (navigation and animation);
  • Objective analysis of physical variables in both surface observation and upperair soundings data;
  • Isoline analysis and shading of grid field;
  • Streamline analysis of wind field;
  • Computation of physics indices and variables from basic variables (pressure, temperature, wind etc.);
  • NetCDF data process and display;
  • GRIB1/GRIB2 data process and display;
  • GrADS data process and display;
  • MICAPS data process and display;
  • Satellite nephogram data display and animation, support AWX, GPF and HDF format;
  • Map zoom, pan, preconfigured projection settings for most of the countries and regions in the world;
  • Zoom to area;
  • Quick navigation via thumbnail view of graphics layers;
  • Save screen shot as image file (support formats: BMP, JPG, PNG);
  • Multiple languages support including English, Japanese, traditional Chinese and simplified Chinese.

System requirements

MeteoExplorer Touch is a certified Windows store application, and is capable of running on all computers with Windows 8 or Windows RT preinstalled.

Display examples