Researchers at Florida State University have developed a new metric to measure seasonal Atlantic tropical cyclone activity that focuses on the size of storms in addition to the duration and intensity, a measure that may prove important when considering a hurricane’s potential for death and destruction.
Just ask the survivors of Hurricane Sandy.
The 2012 hurricane was only a Category 2 storm on the often referenced Saffir-Simpson scale when it became the largest hurricane on record, killing 285 people in its path in seven different countries and becoming the second costliest in U.S. history. Likewise, Hurricane Katrina was a weaker storm than 1969’s Camille but caused much more destruction even though the two hurricanes followed essentially the same path.
The new metric, called Track Integrated Kinetic Energy (TIKE), builds on the concept of Integrated Kinetic Energy (IKE) developed in 2007 to more accurately measure the destructive potential of a storm. IKE involves using kinetic energy scales with the surface stress that forces storm surge and waves and the horizontal wind loads specified by the American Society of Civil Engineers. TIKE expands the concept by accumulating IKE over the lifespan of a tropical cyclone and over all named tropical cyclones in the hurricane season.
“Representing the activity of an Atlantic hurricane season by a number is a very difficult task,” said Vasu Misra, an associate professor of meteorology in the Department of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Science and FSU’s Center for Ocean-Atmospheric Prediction Studies (COAPS). “TIKE gives a succinct picture by taking into account the number of tropical cyclones in the season, the duration of each tropical cyclone and the time history of the wind force over a large area surrounding each tropical cyclone. This makes TIKE much more reliable as an objective measure of the seasonal activity of the Atlantic hurricanes than existing metrics.”
Misra developed TIKE through a collaboration with Steven DiNapoli, a former COAPS data analyst, and Mark Powell, a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration atmospheric scientist currently stationed at COAPS who created IKE with a colleague six years ago. Their paper, “The Track Integrated Kinetic Energy of the Atlantic Tropical Cyclones,” was published in the American Meteorological Society’s Monthly Weather Review.
Misra, DiNapoli and Powell calculated TIKE for each hurricane season, including all named tropical cyclones in the Atlantic from 1990 through 2011, and found larger TIKE values during La Niña conditions and warm tropical Atlantic sea surface temperature conditions. The information will help them in developing a model that can predict TIKE for an entire season — a prediction that could help emergency managers, businesses and residents with preparedness.“I look forward to the global climate models improving enough to allow skillful predictions of storm size, which will help us predict TIKE for an upcoming season,” Powell said.
TIKE is not intended as an alternative to existing metrics but as a complimentary tool, the researchers said.
The need for more information about the potential for destruction was brought home during the 2012 season. The Integrated Kinetic Energy calculation that TIKE is based on was more than 300 terajoules for Hurricane Sandy. The figure, which represents units of energy, was the largest IKE measurement for any hurricane between 1990 and 2006.
“That means that Sandy actually had more wind forcing over a large area than Hurricane Katrina,” Misra said. “If the public was aware that this number was so high, which is an indication of the large potential for damage from storm surge and waves, some of them might have been able to make better life- and property-saving decisions.”
This research was supported by grants from NOAA, the Southeast Ecological Science Center of the U.S. Geological Survey and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Vasu Misra | Newswise
Stagnation in the South Pacific Explains Natural CO2 Fluctuations
23.02.2018 | Carl von Ossietzky-Universität Oldenburg
First evidence of surprising ocean warming around Galápagos corals
22.02.2018 | University of Arizona
A newly developed laser technology has enabled physicists in the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics (jointly run by LMU Munich and the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics) to generate attosecond bursts of high-energy photons of unprecedented intensity. This has made it possible to observe the interaction of multiple photons in a single such pulse with electrons in the inner orbital shell of an atom.
In order to observe the ultrafast electron motion in the inner shells of atoms with short light pulses, the pulses must not only be ultrashort, but very...
A group of researchers led by Andrea Cavalleri at the Max Planck Institute for Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) in Hamburg has demonstrated a new method enabling precise measurements of the interatomic forces that hold crystalline solids together. The paper Probing the Interatomic Potential of Solids by Strong-Field Nonlinear Phononics, published online in Nature, explains how a terahertz-frequency laser pulse can drive very large deformations of the crystal.
By measuring the highly unusual atomic trajectories under extreme electromagnetic transients, the MPSD group could reconstruct how rigid the atomic bonds are...
Quantum computers may one day solve algorithmic problems which even the biggest supercomputers today can’t manage. But how do you test a quantum computer to...
For the first time, a team of researchers at the Max-Planck Institute (MPI) for Polymer Research in Mainz, Germany, has succeeded in making an integrated circuit (IC) from just a monolayer of a semiconducting polymer via a bottom-up, self-assembly approach.
In the self-assembly process, the semiconducting polymer arranges itself into an ordered monolayer in a transistor. The transistors are binary switches used...
Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale
Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...
15.02.2018 | Event News
13.02.2018 | Event News
12.02.2018 | Event News
23.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy
23.02.2018 | Health and Medicine
23.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy