Articles

Using CoCoRahs Precipitation Analysis for Fluvial Geomorphology and Rural Environmental Management
Using CoCoRahs Precipitation Analysis for Fluvial Geomorphology and Rural Environmental Management

In this presentation from the 2022 AMS Weather Band Community and Citizen Science Symposium, Christopher Bridges discusses how the effectiveness of water resources management projects in rural communities can be limited by a lack of reliable long-term monitoring data. This is particularly important when considering agricultural drainage water, stormwater runoff controls and floodplain management in the erodible soils of the Coastal Plains. Additionally, measurement of extreme precipitation events is essential to understanding flooding risk in rural areas.

History and Records of the Automatic Weather Station on Denali Pass Part II: The Data
History and Records of the Automatic Weather Station on Denali Pass Part II: The Data

This is Part II of the series by Dr. Lea Hartl discussing the history and data records of the automatic weather station on Denali Pass. If you missed Part I, follow this link

By Dr. Lea Hartl
"One of the coldest and most savage spots on earth": History and Records of the Automatic Weather Station on Denali
"One of the coldest and most savage spots on earth": History and Records of the Automatic Weather Station on Denali

On February 20th, 1989, a three-person team of Japanese mountaineers climbing the West Buttress route on Denali reached High Camp at 5243 m.a.s.l. The team leader, Noboru Yamada, was hoping to become the first person to summit the highest peaks of the seven continents in winter and was climbing with two other experienced mountaineers, Teruo Saegusa and Kozo Komatsu, on this occasion. The weather on the 20th had been relatively calm.

By Dr. Lea Hartl
Weather and Death on Mount Everest: Part II
Weather and Death on Mount Everest: Part II

Following on from Part I of Weather and Death on Everest, there follows here an indepth look at the meteorological foundations of the storm and the resulting physiological effects on the mountaineers

Analyzing the Into Thin Air Storm

From the 8th to the 13th of May 1996, the summit temperature on Mount Everest underwent an approximate 10°C drop.

By G.W.K. Moore and John L. Semple
Elevating Meteorological Understanding on Everest: Installing the Highest Weather Stations on Earth
Elevating Meteorological Understanding on Everest: Installing the Highest Weather Stations on Earth

Watch this presentation from the research team that installed the highest weather stations on earth: at the summit of Mount Everest. 

You'll also learn why there's such a desperate need for more high elevation weather observations and the challenges that the team faced in getting their gear where it needed to be.

By Baker Perry, Tom Matthews, Kyler Abernathy, Deepak Aryal, Dibas Shrestha, Arbindra Khadka, Aurora Elmore
A Deep Dive into How Skiers and Snowmobilers Use Winter Weather Forecasts
A Deep Dive into How Skiers and Snowmobilers Use Winter Weather Forecasts

Weather service providers around the world offer the public forecasts and warnings to improve decision making and protect life and property. Recent surveys have found that, in the United States, weather news is one of the most popular items in the media (Pew Research Center 2008; Wilson 2008). In fact, it has been estimated that 300 billion forecasts are obtained by U.S. adults on an annual basis (Lazo et al. 2009). But there are very few studies that look at how and why the public gets, reads, and responds to weather information, even though this research is fundamental to the design of weather products and communication strategies.

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.

Weather Maps by Radio
Weather Maps by Radio

In the photograph file of the U. S. Weather Bureau at Washington is an odd-appearing weather map, as big as an ordinary letter head, done in pale blue-green ink on white paper, and carefully preserved under a celluloid "glass." Someday this rather crude little map will possess great historic interest. If you examine it carefully you see that its every line is made up of many short lines, running parallel to each other and very close together, in the top-to-bottom direction on the paper.

By Dr. B.M. Varney
Wireless Wonder: A History of Radar Use for Weather Operations Part I
Wireless Wonder: A History of Radar Use for Weather Operations Part I

The earliest origins of radar meteorology are difficult to uncover. The secrecy surrounding radar in World War II delayed reporting about technological breakthroughs until 1945 and later. But as far as can be determined, radio-location technology was fairly similar across different nations at the outbreak of the war. British work was slightly more advanced, largely due to the efforts of Sir Robert A. Watson-Watt. A Scottish physicist and meteorologist, Watson-Watt was a fellow of the Royal Meteorological Society by 1915, published a paper on radio waves created by lightning in 1922, and delivered the Symons Memorial Lecture in 1929 on ‘‘Weather and Wireless.’’ 

Visualizing Weather: The Visual Display of Quantitative Weather Data at a Garden Site
Visualizing Weather: The Visual Display of Quantitative Weather Data at a Garden Site

In this presentation from the 2022 AMS Community and Citizen Science Symposium, Michael Ray describes how the Nurse Tree Design citizen science project seeks to mimic biological strategies for mitigating and adapting to temperature extremes in order to protect a raised garden through four seasons in the desert southwest. Extreme weather conditions at the garden site in Tucson Arizona can fluctuate 100 degrees (17 F to 117 F).

From Observation to Contribution: Connecting Citizen Observations to the Study of Mesoscale Weather
From Observation to Contribution: Connecting Citizen Observations to the Study of Mesoscale Weather

In this presentation from the 2022 AMS Weather Band Community and Citizen Science Symposium, Ted Best illustrates through case examples how the use of citizen weather observations can elucidate mesoscale convective events. A convective wind event, a long-lived thunderstorm with hail, and a mesoscale convective system with heavy rain show how individual observations can be collected to form a more detailed picture of an event for study. A combination of storm spotting, storm reports, CoCoRaHS observations, and radar images is presented for each case. These observations can call attention to events that might otherwise be missed in a busy and complex environment and can be helpful for improving future forecasts.

Lightning Megaflashes Leave Nowhere to Hide
Lightning Megaflashes Leave Nowhere to Hide

New research locates geographic hotspots for lightning “megaflashes.”

Technically defined as “a mesoscale lightning flash that is at least 100 km long” megaflashes can span hundreds of miles and create multiple lightning strikes far away from the convective core of thunderstorms, coming seemingly out of the blue or calm gray skies. This phenomenon has only recently been described and is still the subject of research. By exploring megaflash characteristics and locating the areas where these types of strikes most often occur, this study argues for the need to increase the precision and effectiveness of lightning safety warnings. 

Swarm Satellites and Glacier Mapping: The Latest Headlines
Swarm Satellites and Glacier Mapping: The Latest Headlines

Here are a few of the news stories from the weather and atmospheric sciences and space that we've been following the last two weeks. Do you have a story we missed? Share it in the community!

Higher waves in the Arctic create ice-containing clouds

A team of scientists led by Dr. Jun Inoue of the National Institute of Polar Research, Japan, sought to answer a peculiar question: can higher waves in the Arctic Sea promote the development of ice-containing clouds? This question may seem strange at first, because most people would not have fathomed that a link could exist between those two natural phenomena. But the findings of this study indicate that there most likely is a connection

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

1938 Hurricane
The 1938 Hurricane

The Great New England Hurricane of 1938 undoubtedly IS the one to which all other New England hurricanes are sooner or later compared. There have only been three others of comparable combined strength and widespread devastation since the colonization of the region.

By Dr. Lourdes Avil├ęs
Are Hurricanes Getting Worse?
Are Hurricanes Getting Worse?

To scientists who study them, there are two mysteries surrounding hurricanes that stand above the rest: Why do they exist at all, and why aren’t there many more of them? This may strike you as a paradox, but these are serious questions that arise when burrowing deep into the theory, modeling, and observations of these storms. And they bear on the question posed by the title of this essay.

By Dr. Kerry Emanuel
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

New Radar Photography, Polar Ice Impacts, and Record Heat: The Latest Headlines
New Radar Photography, Polar Ice Impacts, and Record Heat: The Latest Headlines

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

NASA’s Delta-X mission helps with disaster response after Hurricane Ida

Charged with studying the Mississippi River Delta, NASA’s Delta-X project was gearing up to collect data on Louisiana’s coastal wetlands when Hurricane Ida barreled ashore in late August. The storm – a high-end Category 4 when it made landfall near Port Fourchon, Louisiana, on August 29 – damaged buildings and infrastructure alike, resulting in power outages, flooding, and oil slicks in the Gulf of Mexico.

Cloud Tracker: Satellite Imagery and the Pioneering Work of Tetsuya Fujita
Cloud Tracker: Satellite Imagery and the Pioneering Work of Tetsuya Fujita

Today we rely so heavily on satellite imagery for understanding, predicting, and maintaining life-safety in weather, that it's hard to imagine a world without it. But until the 1960s, there was no satellite imagery, let alone the richly colored images of atmospheric movement that we see everyday.

In addition to his well known and groundbreaking work on tornadoes and aviation safety, Tetsuya Theodore (Ted) Fujita was a pioneer in using satellite imagery to understand and analyze atmospheric motion. He created methods for analyzing satellite images that allowed observers to accurately diagnose wind movement using pictures from the early Television Infrared Observation Satellite (TIROS) launches. He also developed laboratory techniques that facilitated cloud motion analysis.

By W. Paul Menzel
November 10, 1967: NASA's First Color Picture of the Earth
November 10, 1967: NASA's First Color Picture of the Earth

Photography has been an important tool in the atmospheric sciences since it was invented, and as photography advanced, so too did the quality of weather observations. The very first color photograph of the earth from a satellite came from the U.S. Air Force's DODGE satellite that was launched in 1967.

 

Cloudy With a Chance of Pain: A Citizen Science Project to Understand How Weather Affects Pain
Cloudy With a Chance of Pain: A Citizen Science Project to Understand How Weather Affects Pain

The belief that weather influences people's health has been prevalent for millennia. Recent studies on the relationship between weather and pain for those who suffer from chronic pain remain indeterminate, with some studies finding strong effects and others finding no effects; most studies face limitations to their study design or dataset size. To address these limitations, a U.K.-wide smartphone study Cloudy with a Chance of Pain was conducted over 15 months with 10,584 citizen scientists who suffer from chronic pain, producing the largest dataset both in duration and number of participants.

Wildfire Smoke and a Weather Ready Nation
Wildfire Smoke and a Weather Ready Nation

Tanja Fransen's presentation from the 2022 AMS Community and Citizen Science Symposium covers the increasing issues with wildfire smoke intrusions and public health and how a Weather Ready Nation needs to include partners in the public health arenas.  

Life Changing Forecasts: Helping to Manage Meningitis in the West African Sahel
Life Changing Forecasts: Helping to Manage Meningitis in the West African Sahel

Meningitis epidemics have a devastating impact on the region and its people. Even with treatment, the fatality rate can exceed 10%, and 10%–20% of survivors experience long-term after effects including brain damage and hearing loss. Meningitis can push a family into severe poverty, which is especially significant in a region where the annual per capita income ranges from US$500 to US$1500. Weather forecasting can play a significant role in vaccination campaigns and prioritize where vaccines should be delivered. 

By Rajul Pandya, Abraham Hodgson, Mary H. Hayden, Patricia Akweongo, Thomas Hopson, Abudulai Adams Forgor, Tom Yoksas, Maxwell Ayindenaba Dalaba, Vanja Dukic, Roberto Mera, Arnaud Dumont, Kristen McCormack, Dominic Anaseba, Timothy Awine, Jennifer Boehnert,
The Hidden Cost of Heat Waves: Citizen Science and the Harlem Heat Project
The Hidden Cost of Heat Waves: Citizen Science and the Harlem Heat Project

In an average year, high temperatures kill more people in the United States than all other weather-related phenomena combined (NOAA 2016), and in New York City two-thirds of heat-related deaths occur at home. Those most at risk are the ill and elderly, who tend to be home throughout the day. Yet few studies capture indoor residential temperatures in non-air-conditioned homes. 

By Brian Vant-Hull, Prathap Ramamurthy, Brooke Havlik, Carlos Jusino, Cecil Corbin-Mark, Matthew Schuerman, John Keefe, Julia Kumari Drapkin, and A. Adam Glenn
Five Decades of Particulate Air Pollution Health Effects Research
Five Decades of Particulate Air Pollution Health Effects Research

Douglas Dockery from the Harvard Chan School of Medicine covers 50 years of air pollution history and research in this fascinating talk. This includes a look at how energy production and the Arab oil embargo of the 1970s impacted human health and pollution research, and why the focus on PM2.5 particulates came to be.