NOAA Science & Technology Focus Areas

The NOAA Unmanned Systems, Artificial Intelligence, ‘Omics, and Cloud Strategies are intended to dramatically expand our application of these four emerging science and technology focus areas by improving the efficiency, effectiveness and coordination of their development and usage across the agency. As unmanned systems, artificial intelligence, ‘omics, and cloud technologies are revolutionizing our ability to observe, predict, and understand the environment, these strategies will guide transformative advancements in the quality and timeliness of NOAA science, products, and services.

NOAA welcomes your input on these draft strategies. Please submit your comments by the deadline to For specific instructions, visit

In recent years, NOAA and its multisector partners have worked tirelessly to advance successful unmanned systems, artificial intelligence, ‘omics, and cloud solutions that improve our mission accomplishment. The draft strategies will ensure robust agency-wide coordination and strong institutional support from NOAA senior leadership for these emerging science and technology focus areas to guide transformational advances in the quality and efficiency of NOAA's science, products, and services.

FY21 Research and Development Priorities letter, the National Science and Technology Council report “Science and Technology for America’s Oceans: a Decadal Vision”, the Executive Order on Maintaining American Leadership in Artificial Intelligence, the Weather Research and Forecasting Innovation Act of 2017, the Commercial Engagement Through Ocean Technology (CENOTE) Act, and the Federal Cloud Computing Strategy.

Summary of the Four Draft Strategies

Unmanned Systems Strategy: In recognition of the opportunities unmanned systems presents for addressing NOAA's mission priorities, the NOAA Unmanned Systems Strategy provides a framework to: (1) efficiently provide requirements-driven, safe, cost-effective, and compliant Unmanned Systems services across the agency; (2) prioritize strategic investments in Unmanned Systems applications and technologies that fuel innovation and strengthen operations, and (3) accelerate and enhance capabilities through partnerships.

Artificial Intelligence Strategy: The overarching goal of the NOAA Artificial Intelligence (AI) Strategy is to utilize AI to advance NOAA’s requirements-driven mission priorities. Through this strategy, NOAA seeks to reduce the cost of data processing, and provide higher quality and more timely scientific products and services for societal benefits.

'Omics Strategy: In recognition of the opportunities and challenges presented by the advent of ‘omics tools, the NOAA ‘Omics Strategy provides a framework to advance the application of ‘omics to address mission priorities. The strategy leverages NOAA’s current organizational structure to more effectively implement ‘omics through improvements in computational and analytical capacities, targeted research, technology transition, workforce proficiency, and partnerships across NOAA’s lines, federal agencies, and extramural research and commercial communities.

Cloud Strategy: NOAA’s robust experience with cloud applications is already beginning to demonstrate significant improvements in performance and skill in areas such as satellite data products and services, numerical weather prediction, ocean models, and big data analysis, storage and dissemination. Cloud services will be further leveraged to expand benefits, such as: (1) accelerated timeline to acquire new computing resources, (2) increased security posture, (3) more accessible and monetizable NOAA data to customers, such as academia and industry, (4) reduced transition time from research to operations, (5) scalable infrastructure that supports scientific and high performance computing requirements, and (6) a more agile and innovative culture.

To help us promote interest in our S&T focus areas, please share our UxSAI'Omics and Cloud handouts.