Mission Summary
20031205I1 Aircraft 43RF
Extratropical Transition Experiment (ET) into Odette 2003

Scientific Crew
Lead Scientist Peter Dodge
Doppler Scientist Matt Eastin
Dropsonde Scientist Neal Dorst
AXBT Scientist Joe Cione
Observers Sharan Majumdar
Dave Kofron
Aircraft Crew
Pilots CDR Phil Kennedy
LT Mike Silah
Navigator LT Devin Brakob
Flight Director Barry Damiano
Flight Engineer Steve Wade
Engineer Jeff Smith
Technicians Terry Lynch
Ray Tong
Damon SansSouci

Mission Plan :

The ET flight will leave MacDill AFB, FL at 10:00 AM EST and recover at 7:30 PM EST at MacDill AFB.

Mission Summary :

NOAA 43 left Tampa at 1512 UTC, 5 December 2003, and reached our first drop point at 1652. After drop at point 3 we dropped a sequence of AXBTs to Point 4 and then dropped 2 more BTs as we headed SW to the center of Odette. Between 1830 and 2030 we flew an inner core pattern, dropping sondes at 90, 60, 30 and 15 nmi intervals from the center. However there was not a center apparent at our flight level and flight level winds were 35 kts when we passed over the possible center at 1914. At 2016 we noticed that crescent shaped area of convection had formed on the NE side of the storm. We turned back and headed towards that area to see if we could get a wind shift or pressure drop, but we did not see much, although flight-level temp did go up to -2.1 °C. Looking at the sonde plots, there was circulation up to 850 mb, with some remnant at 700 mb, but none apparent at 500 mb.

After dropping the remaining sondes in the pattern, we returned to Tampa, arriving at MacDill at 0005 UTC.


The mission went well, even if Odette was not the strong tropical storm we had hoped for.


Barry Damiano, Devin Brakob and the flight crew were very helpful in both planning and executing the flight. Especially appreciated were the modifications to the flight plan to better place the AXBTs ahead of the storm.

Problems :

  1. There were some problems getting the revised flight track to AOC on Friday morning.
  2. A problem with engine #2 delayed take off by 15 minutes.
  3. The TEMPDROP messages did not have the right header in the sonde messages, so this caused some problems in CARCAH, but the specialists eventually saw our data.
Peter Dodge
Lead Scientist

Mission Data

One minute listing

Flight Data

Flight track

Temperature and Moisture

Wind and Atlitude

Flight track detail

Table 1
GPS Sondes
Launch# ID Time (UTC)LatLon RAComments
102192526916:52:54.623.01250-75.988106122.7 m
202021531917:38:11.020.49630-73.132806124.7 m
302192527118:01:54.618.93410-74.002706118.2 m
402412520518:30:10.017.36130-72.588206117.6 mNo Launch Detect
502192517218:31:38.717.36130-72.588206117.6 mAVAPS system down
602192517918:54:58.115.67910-73.348306102.2 m
702412518319:01:23.515.21360-73.556706096.1 m winds 2 minutes late
802192517819:07:25.114.75410-73.748606092.9 m
902262511019:10:53.114.49640-73.872106096.9 m
1001133502519:14:51.014.17060-73.930906094.8 m
1101137804519:17:43.513.92060-73.931006102.7 m
1201137804419:20:28.913.67990-73.927806110.6 m No winds
1301137803619:26:12.213.18900-73.927506117.4 m
1401133501619:33:38.112.67170-73.828606121.3 m
1501137806119:46:39.613.46090-73.065605942.1 m SE of center
1601134506519:59:47.214.24080-72.439105930.4 m E of center
1701137805920:04:47.814.24770-72.806905929.4 m E of center
1801137823920:12:23.614.24570-73.327105920.4 m Near "eye"
1902292801620:39:43.414.51710-74.900405944.4 m W of center
2001137804220:50:16.314.54530-75.734405951.4 m W of center
2101133503321:46:56.919.00300-77.020506445.1 m No winds
2202192527321:51:49.519.41180-77.119606443.2 m

Note: These times and locations are from the Launch records in the raw GPS files, comments are from the dropsonde scientist logs.

Table 2
Launch(UTC) LatLonSST (°C)

Information from AXBT scientist logs.

Map showing Sonde and AXBT Launch locations. Numbers are keyed to the tables above.

Dropsonde plots at various levels
500 mb
700 mb
850 mb
925 mb
1000 mb

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