When Hurricane Dennis passed North Florida on July 10, 2005, it caused a 10-foot storm surge in some areas along Apalachee Bay -- about 3 to 4 feet more than forecasted-- that couldn't be explained only by the local winds that conventionally drive storm surge.
Now, scientists at Florida State University and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration have found that the surge in Apalachee Bay was amplified by a "trapped wave" that originated off the southwest Florida coast. The discovery of this previously undocumented storm surge phenomenon has changed how NOAA's National Hurricane Center prepares storm surge models for the Gulf of Mexico. New modeling procedures will help improve the accuracy of storm surge forecasts for the entire Gulf coast from Florida to Texas.
Scientists Steven Morey, Mark Bourassa, Dmitry Dukhovskoy and James O'Brien of FSU's Center for Ocean Atmospheric Prediction Studies and Stephen Baig of NOAA's Tropical Prediction Center of the National Hurricane Center drew their conclusions after conducting numerical experiments with storm surge models. Their research was published in the Oct. 4 issue of the journal Geophysical Research Letters.
Hurricane Dennis formed from a tropical depression that originated near the southern Windward Islands on July 4, 2005. It strengthened as it traveled northwest through the Caribbean Sea until it made landfall in Cuba as a Category 4 hurricane. It then traveled west of the Florida Shelf, and the storm's maximum sustained winds weakened to 54 mph before it made landfall on the western Florida Panhandle.
"Winds from Dennis forced water against the southwestern Florida coast creating a bulge of high sea level from Naples to around Tampa," Morey explained. "Oceanographers know that this 'bulge' will form a long wave that, in the Northern Hemisphere, will travel as a wave with the coast to the right. Because Dennis traveled nearly parallel to the Florida Peninsula coast at the same speed as the wave, winds from Dennis amplified the wave as it traveled to Apalachee Bay."
The trapped wave then piled up on the shore along Apalachee Bay on top of the surge generated by the winds over the bay, according to O'Brien.
"To address these findings, we will use as necessary a larger geographical grid in our operational storm surge model in the Gulf of Mexico," said Baig, oceanographer and storm surge leader at NOAA's National Hurricane Center. "This will provide a more comprehensive view of a storm's potential impact in the Gulf by better accounting for the rare trapped wave effect."
This type of remotely trapped wave could play a role in future storms that follow a path similar to Hurricane Dennis or travel westward south of the Louisiana coastline toward Texas, the scientists said.
Steven Morey | EurekAlert!
Greenland ice flow likely to speed up: New data assert glaciers move over sediment, which gets more slippery as it gets wetter
17.08.2017 | Swansea University
Climate change: In their old age, trees still accumulate large quantities of carbon
17.08.2017 | Universität Hamburg
Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.
As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...
Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.
Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...
For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.
While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...
An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.
The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...
A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.
Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...
16.08.2017 | Event News
04.08.2017 | Event News
26.07.2017 | Event News
18.08.2017 | Life Sciences
18.08.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
18.08.2017 | Materials Sciences