Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

UMass Hurricane Hunter Flies Into The Eye Of The Storm; Gathers Information To Help Predict Hurricanes' Paths

Date:
August 27, 1999
Source:
University Of Massachusetts At Amherst
Summary:
University of Massachusetts hurricane hunter Jim Carswell is flying into the eyes of hurricanes again this year, using high-tech weather sensors developed at UMass. These sensors help predict the path and intensity of the storms. Scientists expect this hurricane season, which runs through Oct. 31, to be particularly active.

Information on wind speed and direction helps predict hurricanes' paths, intensities

Related Articles


AMHERST, Mass.-- University of Massachusetts hurricane hunter Jim Carswell is flying into the eyes of hurricanes again this year, using high-tech weather sensors developed at UMass. These sensors help predict the path and intensity of the storms. Scientists expect this hurricane season, which runs through Oct. 31, to be particularly active. The UMass data is used in computer models relied on by National Hurricane Center forecasters to generate up-to-the-minute predictions on a hurricane's course. Pinpoint hurricane forecasting gives people in threatened areas time to protect their property and evacuate to safety, according to Carswell, who flew through Hurricane Bret last week.

Flying through the wall of a hurricane "feels like riding a spinning carnival ride, mounted on a roller-coaster," said Carswell, an engineer with the University's Microwave Remote Sensing Laboratory (MIRSL). While flying high in the storm can be smooth, "anywhere below 10,000 feet is very rough. You're jerking back and forth with a couple of Gs." The remote sensors designed and constructed by researchers at the lab, part of the department of electrical and computer systems engineering, are used to study phenomena ranging from hurricanes, to tornadoes, to lightning. There are two sensors used in hurricanes: a receiver, which passively "listens," and is called a radiometer; and a scatterometer, which sends out a signal, then "listens" for the signal to bounce back.

Satellite images offer an idea of a storm's location and intensity, Carswell said. But it takes reconnaissance flights to get the more precise information that is critical to forecasting the storm's path. The predictions must be as accurate as possible, he said, so that neither too few-- nor too many-- people are evacuated. "If a storm behaves in a way that's unexpected, it's in those situations our data is crucial," said Carswell. Predicting the course of a hurricane is tricky, he said, because hurricanes are comprised of streams of wind blowing at different speeds and in different directions. Data collected by the weather sensors is beamed by satellite to the National Hurricane Center in Miami every minute.

This is Carswell's third season as a hurricane hunter, and the eighth year UMass has been involved in reconnaissance missions. He flies along with researchers from the Hurricane Research Division of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration Aircraft Operations Center. Missions last about 10 hours, and entail anywhere from five to more than 15 passes through a storm's eye, in one of two P-3 airplanes especially equipped to withstand winds whipping up to 180 miles an hour.

###

Note: Further information is available at http://www.aoml.noaa.gov/hrd


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University Of Massachusetts At Amherst. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University Of Massachusetts At Amherst. "UMass Hurricane Hunter Flies Into The Eye Of The Storm; Gathers Information To Help Predict Hurricanes' Paths." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 27 August 1999. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/08/990827073457.htm>.
University Of Massachusetts At Amherst. (1999, August 27). UMass Hurricane Hunter Flies Into The Eye Of The Storm; Gathers Information To Help Predict Hurricanes' Paths. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/08/990827073457.htm
University Of Massachusetts At Amherst. "UMass Hurricane Hunter Flies Into The Eye Of The Storm; Gathers Information To Help Predict Hurricanes' Paths." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/08/990827073457.htm (accessed October 30, 2014).

Share This



More Earth & Climate News

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Deadly Mudslide in Sri Lanka Buries Houses

Deadly Mudslide in Sri Lanka Buries Houses

AP (Oct. 29, 2014) — A mudslide triggered by monsoon rains buried scores of workers' houses at a tea plantation in central Sri Lanka on Wednesday, killing at least 10 people and leaving more than 250 missing, an official said. (Oct. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Galapagos Tortoises Bounce Back, But Ecosystem Lags

Galapagos Tortoises Bounce Back, But Ecosystem Lags

Newsy (Oct. 29, 2014) — The Galapagos tortoise has made a stupendous recovery from the brink of extinction to a population of more than 1,000. But it still faces threats. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Saharan Solar Project to Power Europe

Saharan Solar Project to Power Europe

Reuters - Business Video Online (Oct. 29, 2014) — A solar energy project in the Tunisian Sahara aims to generate enough clean energy by 2018 to power two million European homes. Matt Stock reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obama: The US Will Not 'run and Hide' From Ebola

Obama: The US Will Not 'run and Hide' From Ebola

AP (Oct. 29, 2014) — Surrounded by health care workers in the White House East Room, President Barack Obama said the U.S. will likely see additional Ebola cases in the weeks ahead. But he said the nation can't seal itself off in the fight against the disease. (Oct. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins