Author: AOML Communications

New hurricane research supports advances to NOAA’s 2022 forecasts

This summer during the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season, scientists at NOAA’s Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory (AOML) will once again be on the frontlines helping NOAA prepare the public for severe weather. They will also conduct new research on the complex processes of how tropical cyclones form, develop, and dissipate.

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Scientists Observe Rainfall Under Tropical Cyclones Reduces Sea Surface Cooling

Tropical cyclones intensify by extracting heat energy from the ocean surface, making the sea surface temperature under storms crucial for storm development. A recent study by researchers at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and NOAA’s Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory found that large amounts of rain under tropical cyclones can reduce the sea surface cooling induced by them. 

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Pre-Exposure to a Variable Temperature Treatment Improves the Response of Acropora Cervicornis to Acute Thermal Stress

DEMERLIS, A., A. Kirkland, M.L. Kaufman, A.B. MAYFIELD, N. FORMEL, G. KOLODZIEJ, D.P. Manzello, D. Lirman, N. Traylor-Knowles, and I.C. ENOCHS. Pre-exposure to a variable temperature treatment improves the response of Acropora cervicornis to acute thermal stress. Coral Reefs, 41(2):435-445 ( (2022). 

Abstract: Given that global warming is the greatest threat to coral reefs, coral restoration projects have expanded worldwide with the goal of replenishing habitats whose reef-building corals succumbed to various stressors. In many cases, however, these efforts will be futile if outplanted corals are unable to withstand warmer oceans and an increased frequency of extreme temperature events. Stress-hardening is one approach proposed to increase the thermal tolerance of coral genotypes currently grown for restoration…

Read the Full Paper.

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How the Ocean’s Tiniest Creatures Respond to Changes in the Marine Environment, Revealed by Machine Learning Analysis of ‘Omics Data

Although too tiny to be seen by the naked eye, microscopic organisms have a big impact on our planet – supporting fisheries, degrading pollutants, and helping regulate the earth’s climate. A new study published in Nature Communications employed cutting edge research techniques (collectively referred to as ‘omics) to reveal how the ocean’s tiniest creatures respond to changes in the marine environment. This work addressed a number of objectives in the NOAA ‘Omics Strategic Plan, which calls for the characterization of food webs that sustain fisheries and vulnerable species.

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Coyote Small Uncrewed Aircraft System Data Improved Hurricane Maria Forecasts

Observations obtained by the Coyote small Uncrewed Aircraft System led to a significant improvement in the analyses of Hurricane Maria’s (2017) position, intensity, and structure, according to new ­research published in the journal Monthly Weather Review. The study by scientists with the University of Miami’s Cooperative ­Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Studies and Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory (AOML) highlights how ­the ­Coyote’s novel near-surface measurements helped to more ­accurately depict ­Hurricane Maria’s inner core, ­demonstrating their ability to improve forecasts.

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Hurricane Model that Follows Multiple Storms Improves Intensity Forecasts

Warning the public of the damaging winds in tropical cyclones is critical for safeguarding communities in harm’s way. A new study by hurricane scientists at AOML is the first to quantify the value added to tropical cyclone intensity forecasts by storm-­following nests. The research, published in the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, demonstrates that storm-­following nests applied to multiple hurricanes in the same forecast cycle can improve intensity predictions by as much as 30%.

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Exploring Environmental DNA

Have you ever wondered what animals might be present in a particular habitat or traveled through a certain area of the ocean? Scientists are able to use environmental DNA or “eDNA” sampling to help answer those questions. NOAA’s Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory (AOML) has recently released a new educational video series, “Exploring Environmental DNA” on their website and Youtube channel.

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NOAA AOML Scientists Project Future Changes in ENSO Variability

In a new study published in Nature Communications, scientists at NOAA’s Atlantic Oceanographic & Meteorological Laboratory (AOML) investigate the projected changes in the seasonal evolution of El Niño – Southern Oscillation (ENSO) in the 21st century under the influence of increasing greenhouse gases. The study found that global climate impacts on temperature and precipitation are projected to become more significant and persistent, due to the larger amplitude and extended persistence of El Niño in the second half of the 21st Century (2051-2100).

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Building Endurance to Beat the Heat: New Study Preps Corals for Warming Waters

In a recent study published in the journal Coral Reefs, scientists at NOAA’s Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory (AOML) found that staghorn coral (Acropora cervicornis) fragments exposed to an oscillating temperature treatment were better able to respond to heat stress caused by warming oceans.

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