Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

NASA Researchers Studying Tropical Cyclones

24.06.2005


NASA hurricane researchers are deploying to Costa Rica next month to investigate the birthplace of eastern Pacific tropical cyclones. They will be searching for clues that could lead to a greater understanding and better predictability of one of the world’s most significant weather events – the hurricane.



As scientists and coastal residents brace for another potentially challenging hurricane season, NASA is launching the Tropical Cloud Systems and Processes (TCSP) mission. TCSP is a month-long research effort primarily intended to document "cyclogenesis," the birth of tropical storms, hurricanes and related phenomena.

Researchers will monitor oceanic thunderstorms to study why some systems develop into tropical cyclones and some do not. Researchers feel the data is vital to understanding how such weather systems evolve and travel. The data also could support development of a more accurate and timely warning system to help safeguard property and lives. A team of atmospheric scientists, engineers and aircraft personnel will take up residence in San Jose, Costa Rica during July. The NASA team will work with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and Costa Rican Centro Nacional de Alta Tecnologia (CENAT). The team will conduct ground-based and airborne studies to measure the buildup and behavior of tropical storm systems on Costa Rica’s east and west coasts.


Missions will be flown over the region using NASA’s ER-2 and NOAA’s WP-3D Orion aircraft and with unmanned aerial vehicles (aerosondes). The unmanned flights will be managed in conjunction with the University of Colorado at Boulder. The airborne experiments will collect temperature, humidity, precipitation, and wind information related to tropical cyclones and other phenomena that often lead to development of more powerful storms at sea. The field operations will also take advantage of several NASA and NOAA satellites.

NASA and the Instituto Meteorologico Nacional of Costa Rica also will launch a series of RS-92 series, balloon-borne probes (sondes), to measure humidity and other data related to tropical storm origins.

"Costa Rica is an ideal location for this research," said Dr. Ramesh Kakar, Weather Focus Area leader for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate. A vast number of tropical storms and hurricanes impacting the eastern Pacific are spawned near the small Central American nation’s western coast.

"In the Atlantic, cyclogenesis often occurs off the western coast of Africa, or sufficiently far out over the ocean that long-duration science flights are extremely difficult," Kakar said. "In the eastern Pacific near Costa Rica, however, it is possible to study the genesis process from formation of the initial disturbance until, in some cases, it grows into a hurricane over a more compact geographical region."

Researchers also will be able to take advantage of their proximity to the Caribbean and the western Gulf of Mexico, studying tropical systems off Costa Rica’s eastern shores during more mature phases of development.

"This experiment is significant for two reasons," said Robbie Hood, an atmospheric scientist at the Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Ala. She is one of three lead scientists for the project in Costa Rica. "We will have an opportunity to take a closer look at the factors contributing to the initiation and intensification of tropical cyclones which are still somewhat mysterious processes for researchers and operational forecasters. We will also be examining what are the best combinations of satellite and aircraft technologies to improve how hurricanes are monitored and predicted," she said.

"Building on a quarter century of ever improving spaceborne observations of the Earth, we are entering an exciting new era. It will be using information collected by satellites and uninhabited aerial vehicles to the best advantage for improved weather prediction and other societal benefits," Hood said.

The new study continues NASA’s successful Convection and Moisture Experiment (CAMEX) research series, conducted from 1998 to 2001 with NOAA. TCSP participants include NOAA’s Hurricane Research Division, five NASA centers, 10 American universities and partner agencies in Costa Rica.

Rob Gutro | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.nasa.gov/vision/earth/lookingatearth/hurricane_2005.html
http://tcsp.nsstc.nasa.gov/tcsp
http://www.aoml.noaa.gov/hrd/

More articles from Earth Sciences:

nachricht Modeling magma to find copper
13.01.2017 | Université de Genève

nachricht What makes erionite carcinogenic?
13.01.2017 | Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena

All articles from Earth Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

Im Focus: How to inflate a hardened concrete shell with a weight of 80 t

At TU Wien, an alternative for resource intensive formwork for the construction of concrete domes was developed. It is now used in a test dome for the Austrian Federal Railways Infrastructure (ÖBB Infrastruktur).

Concrete shells are efficient structures, but not very resource efficient. The formwork for the construction of concrete domes alone requires a high amount of...

Im Focus: Bacterial Pac Man molecule snaps at sugar

Many pathogens use certain sugar compounds from their host to help conceal themselves against the immune system. Scientists at the University of Bonn have now, in cooperation with researchers at the University of York in the United Kingdom, analyzed the dynamics of a bacterial molecule that is involved in this process. They demonstrate that the protein grabs onto the sugar molecule with a Pac Man-like chewing motion and holds it until it can be used. Their results could help design therapeutics that could make the protein poorer at grabbing and holding and hence compromise the pathogen in the host. The study has now been published in “Biophysical Journal”.

The cells of the mouth, nose and intestinal mucosa produce large quantities of a chemical called sialic acid. Many bacteria possess a special transport system...

Im Focus: Newly proposed reference datasets improve weather satellite data quality

UMD, NOAA collaboration demonstrates suitability of in-orbit datasets for weather satellite calibration

"Traffic and weather, together on the hour!" blasts your local radio station, while your smartphone knows the weather halfway across the world. A network of...

Im Focus: Repairing defects in fiber-reinforced plastics more efficiently

Fiber-reinforced plastics (FRP) are frequently used in the aeronautic and automobile industry. However, the repair of workpieces made of these composite materials is often less profitable than exchanging the part. In order to increase the lifetime of FRP parts and to make them more eco-efficient, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) and the Apodius GmbH want to combine a new measuring device for fiber layer orientation with an innovative laser-based repair process.

Defects in FRP pieces may be production or operation-related. Whether or not repair is cost-effective depends on the geometry of the defective area, the tools...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

Nothing will happen without batteries making it happen!

05.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Multiregional brain on a chip

16.01.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

New technology enables 5-D imaging in live animals, humans

16.01.2017 | Information Technology

Researchers develop environmentally friendly soy air filter

16.01.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>