NASA and NOAA scientists participating in NASA’s Hurricane and Severe Storms Sentinel (HS3) mission used their expert skills, combined with a bit of serendipity on Sept. 17, 2014, to guide the remotely piloted Global Hawk over the eye of Hurricane Edouard and release a sonde that rotated within the eye as it descended and fell into the eyewall of the storm at low levels.
NASA’s HS3 mission has returned to NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility on the Eastern Shore of Virginia for the third year to investigate the processes that underlie hurricane formation and intensity change in the Atlantic Ocean basin.
This video shows two passes over Hurricane Edouard during the sixth science flight of NASA’s Global Hawk No. 872 using two of the onboard cameras. One pass is during the day, the second right after “moonrise.”
Image Credit: NASA's Armstrong Flight Research Center, David Fratello
NOAA’s Advanced Vertical Atmospheric Profiling System (AVAPS) aboard Global Hawk No. 872 released 88 dropsondes into the hurricane that measured temperature, humidity and winds throughout the depth of the troposphere, the region of the atmosphere where humans and aircraft experience weather.
During the Global Hawk’s seventh science flight on Sept. 17, “the remotely piloted aircraft released a dropsonde from 62,000 feet along the inner edge of the eyewall on a south to north pass,” said Michael L. Black, research meteorologist at the Hurricane Research Division, NOAA’s Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research - Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory in Florida.
Black said, “The sonde started out on the south side of the eye and rotated around to the eastern eyewall. The sonde reported a sea-level pressure of 963 millibars, surface winds of 90 knots [103.6 mph, or 166.7 kph], and average low-level winds of 95 knots.”
The data showed that Eduoard was indeed still at least a strong Category 2 hurricane, possibly Category 3, as the strong winds continued to be observed near the ocean surface.
Basically, the dropsonde, along with 87 others during this flight, provided readings from top to bottom of the critical region of the atmosphere, giving scientists a perfect view of winds, temperature and pressure throughout the whole depth of the storm.
On Sept. 18, Global Hawk No. 872 took off at 7:15 a.m. EDT to return to investigate Eduoard as it moved over cooler Atlantic waters and was expected to weaken. This mission was the eighth science flight during the current campaign for the Global Hawk. During the flight, the Global Hawk ejected 50 dropsondes and observed the decay of Hurricane Edouard to tropical storm strength and recorded the beginning of the demise of the storm that included the decoupling from the mid- and low-level centers of the storm.
Overall, the Global Hawk flights into Edouard documented its formation into a tropical storm, its rapid increase in intensity into a major, Category 3 storm, and its decay back to a tropical depression thereby capturing the life cycle of a classic hurricane with roots from a tropical wave from Africa.
The HS3 mission is funded by NASA Headquarters and overseen by NASA’s Earth System Science Pathfinder Program at NASA’s Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia. It is one of five large airborne campaigns operating under the Earth Venture program.
The HS3 mission also involves collaborations with partners including the National Centers for Environmental Prediction, Naval Postgraduate School, Naval Research Laboratory, NOAA’s Unmanned Aircraft System Program, Hurricane Research Division and Earth System Research Laboratory, Northrop Grumman Space Technology, National Center for Atmospheric Research, State University of New York at Albany, University of Maryland - Baltimore County, University of Wisconsin, and University of Utah. The HS3 mission is managed by the Earth Science Project Office at NASA Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, California. The aircraft are maintained and based at NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center in Edwards, California.
For more information about NASA’s HS3 mission, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/hs3
Rob Gutro | Eurek Alert!
Filling the gap: High-latitude volcanic eruptions also have global impact
20.11.2017 | Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences
Antarctic landscape insights keep ice loss forecasts on the radar
20.11.2017 | University of Edinburgh
The WHO reports an estimated 429,000 malaria deaths each year. The disease mostly affects tropical and subtropical regions and in particular the African continent. The Fraunhofer Institute for Silicate Research ISC teamed up with the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME and the Institute of Tropical Medicine at the University of Tübingen for a new test method to detect malaria parasites in blood. The idea of the research project “NanoFRET” is to develop a highly sensitive and reliable rapid diagnostic test so that patient treatment can begin as early as possible.
Malaria is caused by parasites transmitted by mosquito bite. The most dangerous form of malaria is malaria tropica. Left untreated, it is fatal in most cases....
The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.
Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...
Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.
That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...
Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.
During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....
The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.
Future quantum computers will be able to solve problems where conventional computers fail today. We are still far away from any large-scale implementation,...
15.11.2017 | Event News
15.11.2017 | Event News
30.10.2017 | Event News
21.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
21.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
21.11.2017 | Life Sciences