Articles

Best Practices for Weather Station Accuracy: Lessons from Urbana, Illinois
Best Practices for Weather Station Accuracy: Lessons from Urbana, Illinois

“How accurate is your data?” 

This is one of the big, never ending, unresolved questions around using and interpreting atmospheric data. Of course uncertainties have existed and will continue to exist in all forms of environmental data. But in order to understand our weather history, and our weather future, there is a need to define, measure, and understand these uncertainties. 

Drone Forecasting, Go-Kits, and Carbon Dioxide Reactors: The Latest News
Drone Forecasting, Go-Kits, and Carbon Dioxide Reactors: The Latest News

Here are a few of the news stories that we've been following in the last week. Do you have a story we missed? Share it in the community!

AMS Weather Band Community and Citizen Science Symposium
AMS Weather Band Community and Citizen Science Symposium

We are excited to announce the AMS Weather Band's first Community and Citizen Science Symposium!

Please join us as a speaker or a participant for this two day, virtual event, that will showcase citizen and community science projects and programs related to weather and the atmospheric sciences. It will take place on Friday, January 21, and Saturday, January 22 12:00 - 5:00 ET.

What Makes a Rainbow?
What Makes a Rainbow?

Rainbows occupy an important place in mythology, culture, and language all over the world. They also helped inspire advances in physics, mathematics, and understanding the nature of light!

Technically, you can only see a rainbow when the sun is behind your head and drops of water are in the air. The water drops might be from a rain shower, a waterfall, or even the spray from a water gun. Explore the infographic below for more rainbow facts. 

Queen Carlotta of the Air
Queen Carlotta of the Air

It wasn’t clear when Mary Breed Hawley married Carl Edgar Myers in 1871, that by the end of the century they would be one of the powerhouse couples of early aeronautics and create a revolution in American ballooning. 

Lightning in Space, Time Capsules, and Fighting Wildfires with Community Science: The Latest News
Lightning in Space, Time Capsules, and Fighting Wildfires with Community Science: The Latest News

Here are a few of the news stories that we've been following in the last week. Do you have a story we missed? Share it in the community!

Superbolts extend extreme lightning impacts into space

A rare type of lightning has had scientists scratching their heads since the late 1970s. “Superbolts” are the most powerful lightning on Earth, with discharges so strong that they cannot be reproduced in the laboratory. The bolts also display geographic and seasonal attributes opposite that of regular lightning, adding to their mystery.

Q&A with AcuRite
Q&A with AcuRite

Get a personalized tour of weather stations, data dashboards, community, and home monitoring tools from the amazing team at AcuRite. They're always looking for customer feedback, so share your thoughts in the Weather Band community as well. 

How the First Weather "Computers" Changed World War II
How the First Weather "Computers" Changed World War II

Behind the bloody beaches of D-Day and the deathly bloom of mushroom clouds in the bright desert, behind supercomputers and the weather app on your phone, there is a mainly unrecognized group of young women who wielded the power of math to change the course of history. 

Back to Back Hurricanes, Bumblebee Weather, and Exoplanets: The Latest Headlines
Back to Back Hurricanes, Bumblebee Weather, and Exoplanets: The Latest Headlines

Here are a few of the news stories that we've been following in the last week. Do you have a story we missed? Share it in the community

Weather and the Ski Industry
Weather and the Ski Industry

Join Mallory Brooke of Nor'Easter Weather Consulting as she takes us inside the weather and the ski industry to look at teleconnections, forecasting tools, and how forecasts are used for events like the World Cup at Killington. This will also include a deeper dive into different weather issues and their impacts at the World Cup years 2016-2019.

Extreme Weather Prediction and Soundings from an Asteroid: The Latest Headlines
Extreme Weather Prediction and Soundings from an Asteroid: The Latest Headlines

Scientists from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impacts have developed a new mathematical approach that they say can substantially improve the prediction of extreme weather events. Analyzing the connectivity and patterns between geographical locations, it could potentially save thousands of lives and avoid billions in economic losses. Prediction times for events like El Niño, monsoons, droughts or extreme rainfall could be increased substantially, to a month or in some cases even a year in advance, depending on the type of the event.

The Crossover: Meteorology and Basketball with Ken Pomeroy
The Crossover: Meteorology and Basketball with Ken Pomeroy

Ken Pomeroy has worked in basketball for 15 years, providing analytics for college basketball teams through his web site and consulting for NBA teams since 2003. His work has been used by coaches, media, and fans, and his ratings are used by the NCAA’s basketball committee to help select teams for its postseason tournament. But his path to the sport began as a grad student in Atmospheric Science at University of Wyoming and then as a meteorologist with the National Weather Service for 12 years, where he learned the science of making predictions. Many principles of weather prediction have direct application to predicting basketball outcomes, both for players and teams. In this talk for the Weather Band, Ken discusses his background in weather prediction and how the lessons he learned there helped him succeed with sports analytics.

Trustworthy AI for Severe Weather
Trustworthy AI for Severe Weather

Join Dr. McGovern for an introduction to Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and their applications for severe weather. Dr. Amy McGovern is the Lloyd G. and Joyce Austin Presidential Professor at the School of Computer Science and School of Meteorology at the University of Oklahoma. Dr. McGovern is also the director of the NSF AI Institute for Research on Trustworthy AI in Weather, Climate, and Coastal Oceanography. Her research focuses on developing and applying trustworthy AI and machine learning methods primarily for severe weather phenomena as changes in weather patterns, oceans, sea level rise, and disaster risk amplify the need for accelerated AI research in the environmental sciences.

Webinar on 12/3: A Windstorm Resilience Success Story
Webinar: A Windstorm Resilience Success Story

This webinar explores perhaps one of the least known but most successful windstorm mitigation programs in the United States, the IBHS FORTIFIED Home Program. We will explore the origins of the program and how decades of wind engineer research was applied to create a practical way to build better for both new homes and retrofits.

How Did Barometers Change Hurricane Research? Lessons from 1600s Barbados
How Did Barometers Change Hurricane Research? Lessons from 1600s Barbados

"I believe, there might be excellent use made of the Barometer for predicting of Hurricanes, and other Tempests, especially at sea; since I am credibly informed, that a person of quality, who lives by the sea-side...can by the Barometer almost infallibly foretell any great tempest for several hours before it begins.”

How to Monitor Drought and Build Community in the Desert Southwest
How to Monitor Drought and Build Community in the Desert Southwest

As billion dollar disasters continue to take place across the United States, communities are racing to increase their mitigation and response planning for these events. But some are more difficult to plan for than others. Drought in particular can be difficult to get good measurements and data for. It can also have impacts on community life and economic activity that are difficult to separate out from other events. 

Public Engagement for the Fifth National Climate Assessment
Public Engagement for the Fifth National Climate Assessment

The U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) and the authors of the Fifth National Climate Assessment (NCA5) are hosting a series of virtual public engagement workshops to inform development of this federal climate report. These workshops are free and open to the public. The information gathered in this workshop will help authors decide which topics to cover in their chapter of the Fifth National Climate Assessment, a major U.S. Government report on how climate change affects people and places in the United States.

How Weather Impacts Major Airports in the United States
How Weather Impacts Major Airports in the United States

Weather impacts airplane flights and airport operations in a variety of ways and is a major concern for the aviation community (Kulesa 2003). Pilots need to avoid weather that will endanger a flight, and also need to understand how weather will impact the performance of the aircraft. Air traffic controllers need to understand where hazardous weather is located so that they can direct aircraft to safety or hold aircraft on the ground

Symposium Presentation Schedule
Symposium Presentation Schedule

Join us for the first AMS Weather Band Community and Citizen Science Symposium on January 21 and 22! Our speaker schedule is below. We look forward to seeing you there! 

Reporting from the Heart of the Storm with Jen Carfagno
Reporting from the Heart of the Storm with Jen Carfagno

Learn more about Jen Carfagno's background, career, and life at the Weather Channel! She shares her top weather stories, looks back at the progression of weather technology, and gives us an inside look at her job in this conversation with AMS Weather Band members and friends.

What Inspired the First European Images of Tornadoes
What Inspired the First European Images of Tornadoes

In addition to art, culture, and philosophy, the European Renaissance (1400-1600 CE) brought the first serious attempts to predict the weather and new approaches to forecasting. While the invention of measurement devices such as the thermometer (in 1607) and the barometer (1643) was yet to come, increased interest in weather observations came from the “discoveries” of new lands and seas, which considerably enlarged and widened old ideas and conceptions. 

Weather in the Dark: North Pole-1 and the Siberian Weather Stations of the 1930s
Weather in the Dark: North Pole-1 and the Siberian Weather Stations of the 1930s

Imagine, if you will, spending an entire year on a floating chunk of ice in the Arctic ocean: drifting gently through arctic waters, you are unable to steer around other icebergs or escape storms and left to the mercy of howling winds, snow, and sun. During the winter, 24 hours of darkness is alleviated only by the amount of electricity you can peddle out of a bicycle-powered generator. Your bed will be inside an eider-down tent lined in fur. And every day you wake up to launch weather balloons at strict intervals. 

Deadly Weather During the Race to the South Pole
Deadly Weather During the Race to the South Pole

The Norwegian and British Antarctic expeditions to the South Pole are often regarded as the height of the heroic age of Antarctic exploration. Using a team of five men and primarily relying on dog sledges, Roald Amundsen first reached the geographic South Pole on 14 December 1911. Just over a month later, a team of five men led by Captain Robert Falcon Scott reached the South Pole on 17 January 1912, only to find a tent left by Amundsen.

Hailstones in Hawaii
Hailstones in Hawaii

Hailstones are a rare sight in Hawaii due to the high temperatures (averaging 22°C near the coast in February) and a steady trade wind layer shallower than 3 km. However, in winter, midlatitude fronts hit the islands and cumulonimbus associated with them often produce snow at the tops of Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa (4202 km and 4172 km in height, respectively). The combination of well-developed cumulonimbus and low temperatures at the surface sometimes leads to the observation of hailstones at ground level even in Hawaii. 

Understanding Extreme Heat Threats with a Public Engaged Weather Network in Hong Kong
Understanding Extreme Heat Threats with a Public Engaged Weather Network in Hong Kong

In this talk presented at the 2022 AMS Community and Citizen Science Symposium, Dr. Lam introduces a Hong Kong based Community Weather Information Network (Co-WIN) which provides local meteorological information from the rooftops of primary and secondary schools (and has over 170 members). He provides a comprehensive overview of network operations including sensor development, data quality assurance, public engagement and scientific investigation. The talk also includes examples of using the network data for various applications such as numerical downscaling for high-resolution forecast and extreme heat warning signal system for heat stress-related health threats will be covered, illustrating the importance and the contribution of citizen science to  traditional scientific studies.