Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

UMass Hurricane Hunters Flying Into The Eye Of The Storm

Date:
July 12, 2000
Source:
University Of Massachusetts, Amherst
Summary:
University of Massachusetts hurricane hunter Jim Carswell will be 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 from now until Oct. 31, to be "above average," with at least three severe hurricanes.

Real-time information helps predict hurricanes' paths, intensities

AMHERST, Mass. - University of Massachusetts hurricane hunter Jim Carswell will be 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 from now until Oct. 31, to be "above average," with at least three severe hurricanes. Graduate student Tony Castells is already in Miami, installing the instruments in the aircraft; Carswell will join him in early August, when the bigger storms are expected to begin brewing.

The UMass team is responsible for sending real-time data to the National Hurricane Center. This information is used to establish landfall warnings and intensity reports. Pinpoint forecasts give people in threatened areas time to protect their property and evacuate to safety, according to Carswell. "We do research that has an immediate positive impact on people's safety," said Carswell. "That's a pretty neat experience."

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). 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. Missions last about 10 hours, and entail anywhere from five to more than 15 passes through a storm's eye, in a cross-shaped pattern, in a P-3 airplane equipped to withstand winds whipping up to 180 miles an hour.

The remote sensors are designed and constructed by researchers at the UMass lab, part of the department of electrical and computer systems engineering. A specially modified radar "looks" at the water surface, as well as the rain, to determine the storm's wind speed and wind direction. Scientists are also interested in determining how much water is in a storm system, since flooding can cause more damage than wind - as Hurricane Floyd demonstrated last year.

This is Carswell's fourth season as a hurricane hunter, and the ninth year UMass has been involved in such reconnaissance missions. He flies along with researchers from the Hurricane Research Division of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Aircraft Operations Center.


Story Source:

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


Cite This Page:

University Of Massachusetts, Amherst. "UMass Hurricane Hunters Flying Into The Eye Of The Storm." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 12 July 2000. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/07/000712075010.htm>.
University Of Massachusetts, Amherst. (2000, July 12). UMass Hurricane Hunters Flying Into The Eye Of The Storm. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/07/000712075010.htm
University Of Massachusetts, Amherst. "UMass Hurricane Hunters Flying Into The Eye Of The Storm." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/07/000712075010.htm (accessed July 25, 2014).

Share This




More Earth & Climate News

Friday, July 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath

Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath

AP (July 25, 2014) — Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe toured the Cherrystone Family Camping and RV Resort on the Chesapeake Bay today, a day after it was hit by a tornado. The storm claimed two lives and injured dozens of others. (July 25) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Europe's Highest Train Turns 80 in French Pyrenees

Europe's Highest Train Turns 80 in French Pyrenees

AFP (July 25, 2014) — Europe's highest train, the little train of Artouste in the French Pyrenees, celebrates its 80th birthday. Duration: 01:05 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Goma Cheese Brings Whiff of New Hope to DRC

Goma Cheese Brings Whiff of New Hope to DRC

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 24, 2014) — The eastern region of the Democratic Republic of Congo, mainly known for conflict and instability, is an unlikely place for the production of fine cheese. But a farm in the village of Masisi, in North Kivu is slowly transforming perceptions of the area. Known simply as Goma cheese, the Congolese version of Dutch gouda has gained popularity through out the region. Ciara Sutton reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Bill Gates: Health, Agriculture Key to Africa's Development

Bill Gates: Health, Agriculture Key to Africa's Development

AFP (July 24, 2014) — Health and agriculture development are key if African countries are to overcome poverty and grow, US software billionaire Bill Gates said Thursday, as he received an honourary degree in Ethiopia. Duration: 00:36 Video provided by AFP
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:
from the past week

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