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2002 Hurricane Field Program Firsts
  • NOAA's Gulfstream IV jet flies four eight hour surveillance missions around Isidore in under 48 hours. Crews were able to accomplish this with just 3 and a half hours turnaround time. Then around Hurricane Lili the G-IV flies five consecutive missions within 60 hours.
  • The first complete mapping of both the upper ocean's temperature and current fields in a near-hurricane environment was accomplished during the Hurricane AIR Sea INteraction (HAIRSIN) experiments conducted this year in collaboration with the University of Miami. During HAIRSIN the following firsts were achieved :
    • First real-time processing and transmission of Airborne eXpendable BathyThermograph (AXBT) ocean temperature profile data from NOAA P-3 to NCEP
    • First time the SAME upper ocean area temperature has been sampled on two consecutive days. Paired AXBT measurments, in the pre-storm and hurricane environment, were typically only a few kilometers apart. These observations will allow researchers to quantitatively estimate the direct change hurricane winds have on the ocean's mixed layer structure.
    • First deployment of an Airborne eXpendable Conductivity Temperature and Depth probe (AXCTD) in strong winds. This will allow examination of the response of the ocean mixed layer to the tropical storm environment.
    • Concurrent Airborne eXpendable Current Profiler (AXCP) drop and directional wave spectra measured from aircraft. This will help define the relationship of surface waves to wind-driven flows and ocean swell.
  • First Coupled Boundary Layer Air Sea Transfer (CBLAST) experiments are flown. This Office of Naval Research project used a new suite of instruments installed on the NOAA P-3s to measure the air-sea interface and atmospheric boundary layer in a high-wind environment.
  • Data are transmitted from and received by the NOAA P-3s over a satellite phone link to the Internet.
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