Happy Holidays to all! As we close out 2023, join us as we look back at some of our top research highlights this year! From responding to heat waves to setting records and launching new tech, our dedicated team continues to push the boundary in an effort to support NOAA’s mission to build a climate-ready […]
November 30th marks the official end to the 2023 Atlantic hurricane season. Scientists and forecasters from across NOAA pushed boundaries as they worked throughout this active season to conduct crucial tropical cyclone research that will strengthen our ability to forecast future tropical cyclone development and better protect those most affected.
NOAA hurricane researchers successfully deployed a new uncrewed aircraft system (UAS) into Tropical Storm Tammy (2023) near an uncrewed surfance vehicle, saildrone, to measure parts of the storm too dangerous for humans to go. The Altius 600 UAS was launched from the NOAA WP-3D Orion Hurricane Hunter aircraft by scientists from NOAA’s Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory during missions into the storm in coordination with the saildrone researchers and pilots.
NOAA hurricane researchers successfully deployed a new uncrewed aircraft system (UAS) into Tropical Storm Tammy (2023) to measure parts of the storm too dangerous for humans to go. The Black Swift Technologies S0™ UAS was launched from the NOAA WP-3D Orion Hurricane Hunter aircraft by scientists from NOAA’s Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory during missions into the storm as it strengthened and headed closer to the Leeward Islands of the Caribbean.
This summer marks AOML’s tenth consecutive year of gathering underwater glider observations during the Atlantic hurricane season. The project began in 2014 with two gliders deployed off Puerto Rico to study the ocean’s role in tropical cyclone development and intensification. Since then, glider observations have become an integral part of the data gathered annually to improve tropical cyclone forecasts, as well as better understand how the ocean and atmosphere interact during the passage of tropical cyclones.
AOML’s Hurricane Modeling Group was founded in 2007 to advance hurricane forecast models through development and targeted research. From inception, the team has worked to improve NOAA’s hurricane modeling systems; first with the legacy Hurricane Weather Research Forecast (HWRF) model, and now with its transition to the next generation model, Hurricane Analysis and Forecast System (HAFS).
Scientists at NOAA’s Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory (AOML) found that Atlantic Niño, the Atlantic counterpart of the Pacific El Niño, increases the formation of tropical cyclones off the coast of West Africa, also known as Cape (Cabo) Verde hurricanes. The study published in Nature Communications is the first to investigate the links between Atlantic Niño/Niña and seasonal Atlantic tropical cyclone activity and the associated physical mechanisms.
Researchers at NOAA seek new techniques to advance hurricane forecasts to better protect life and property. In preparation for the upcoming 2023 hurricane season, which begins June 1, scientists are accelerating the use of small uncrewed aircraft technologies and the collocation of observational ocean assets, among other advancements. Here are five ways that NOAA researchers are improving hurricane track and intensity forecasts:
November 30th marked the official end to the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season. Scientists and forecasters from across NOAA worked tirelessly throughout the season to conduct critical tropical cyclone research. This year, NOAA’s Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory (AOML) coordinated the longest series of missions into a single tropical system, arranged multiple observing assets for simultaneous data collection, deployed new sUAS technology, and included a novel “moving nest” to our next-generation hurricane model.
How do weak, misaligned tropical cyclones evolve towards alignment? A multi-case study using the Hurricane Analysis and Forecast System
The ability to predict whether and when a tropical cyclone will become vertically aligned is critical for intensity change forecasts, as storms can intensify quickly after achieving an aligned structure. A recent study from researchers at NOAA’s Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory and the University of Miami’s Cooperative Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Studies shows how weak, disorganized tropical cyclones containing different center locations with height, called misalignment, can develop a vertically aligned structure. This study works to improve forecasts of when this alignment might occur by identifying key times of the day and other tropical cyclone characteristics when alignment is likely.