Noooo, when they couold spend alot less on a SETI replacement
Why they don't just do a nice SETI like distributed client that all the weather nuts in the World would happily run and get some nice forcasts at higher resolution modeling than they can do now. Then they would just need to send and recieve the work units out. Sure they can use there onsite computers as well to add to the workload, and I'm fairly sure that various govermental departments have overspecced desktops CPU wise that sit idle alot given 5 year buying cycles on IT hardware(worst case) and that even a 5year old CPU is overpowered for most word users (though windows does try to help out there :-).
Also look at carrying on allowing weather model data for free as long as it's not for profit, we all know a few weather forcast sites that just scrape there data from xxx govermental agency in xxx country and mash it up and sell it on, if there making money then surely they should contribute somewhat.
But as we stand currently I believe they run the models at a resolution of 1 mile, they could be reduced with more comute power.
Also one thing the met office needs to look at is the ability to source other sources of measurement/metrics and adjust, so even though the 100 home weather data sets don't furfill the metoffice layout standard and not used there data can be over a short time calabrated in a way that would accomodate there location quirks and indeed factor that in giving more data that is not used currently. One example would be a weather station ontop of a block of flats say. Now that incures urban heat radiation effects so it's effected by the enviroment to the stage that it's not used by the met office as it falls foul of some of there station location criteria (which in many ways makes sence). But if everybody in that area/block of flats also feels that effect then isn't that the weather they experience, we all know London is hotter becasue of that heat radiation effect (all that concrete etc) and that effects the wether so lets use that and not exclude that. One hand saying we effect the climate and on the other saying ew that data is effected by the enviromental human effect and not use it is a little bit crazy.
This is why I for one would rather see this money spent on a project to do software that distrabutes the load and allows statistical analysis/smoothing to allow more data to be utilised.
Feeding back actualities back into the model would easily allow it to adjust for general unsuitable weather stations and as such afford mroe data and a better grasp on whats happening giving better models, better forcasts, better for all.
Another thought for a laugh if I was to have a computer that generated as much heat as the sun then it could forcast saftly everytime it runs that it will be hot :D.
lets do some smart software and look at other sources of data and do this smart and not the usual here is a wedge of cash please spend on wedge of metal approach.
Spend the money on think not fail.