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Intensity Forecasting EXperiment 2008

NOAA's Hurricane Research Division, part of the Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratories located in Miami, FL, is in the midst of a multi-year experiment along with the NOAA Aircraft Operations Center (AOC) called the Intensity Forecasting Experiment (IFEX). Developed in partnership with NOAA's Environmental Modeling Center (EMC) and its Tropical Prediction Center, IFEX is intended to improve our understanding and prediction of hurricane intensity change by collecting observations that will aid in the improvement of current operational models and the development of the next-generation operational hurricane model, the Hurricane Weather Research and Forecasting model (HWRF). Observations will be collected in a variety of hurricanes at different stages in their lifecycle, from formation and early organization to peak intensity and subsequent landfall or decay over open water.

There are several unique aspects of IFEX in 2008 that will help improve our understanding and prediction of hurricane intensity change:

  1. Three-Dimensional Doppler Winds experiment

  2. Tropical Cyclone Landfall and Inland Decay Experiment

  3. Tropical Cyclone Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) Inflow/Eyewall/Eye Experiment

  4. Tropical Cyclogenesis Experiment (GenEx)

  5. Nadir Off-set SFMR Experiment

  6. Tropical Cyclone/AEW Arc Cloud Experiment

  7. Saharan Air Layer Experiment (SALEX)

  8. Sea-Salt Aerosol and Cloud Base Number Concentration Experiment

  9. Eyewall Microphysics Experiment

  10. TC-Ocean Interaction Experiment

  11. Hurricane Synoptic Surveillance

During this year, IFEX will be operating in partnership with several other experiments:

  • NOAA Ocean Winds Experiment - The goal of the Ocean Winds experiment is to further our understanding of wind direction and speed retrievals at the ocean surface level from microwave remote-sensing measurements in high wind conditions and in the presence of rain. Measurements taken from the Ocean Winds experiment in mature storms will aid in the understanding and improvement of satellite remotely-sensed wind measurements which are currently used operationally by marine forecates and in numerical weather prediction models.

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