Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Researchers Develop New Metric to Measure Destructive Potential of Hurricanes

26.04.2013
TIKE designed to focus on size of storms as well as duration and intensity

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
Further information:
http://www.fsu.edu

More articles from Earth Sciences:

nachricht Scientists shed light on carbon's descent into the deep Earth
19.07.2017 | European Synchrotron Radiation Facility

nachricht Thawing permafrost releases old greenhouse gas
19.07.2017 | GFZ GeoForschungsZentrum Potsdam, Helmholtz Centre

All articles from Earth Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Manipulating Electron Spins Without Loss of Information

Physicists have developed a new technique that uses electrical voltages to control the electron spin on a chip. The newly-developed method provides protection from spin decay, meaning that the contained information can be maintained and transmitted over comparatively large distances, as has been demonstrated by a team from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute. The results have been published in Physical Review X.

For several years, researchers have been trying to use the spin of an electron to store and transmit information. The spin of each electron is always coupled...

Im Focus: The proton precisely weighted

What is the mass of a proton? Scientists from Germany and Japan successfully did an important step towards the most exact knowledge of this fundamental constant. By means of precision measurements on a single proton, they could improve the precision by a factor of three and also correct the existing value.

To determine the mass of a single proton still more accurate – a group of physicists led by Klaus Blaum and Sven Sturm of the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear...

Im Focus: On the way to a biological alternative

A bacterial enzyme enables reactions that open up alternatives to key industrial chemical processes

The research team of Prof. Dr. Oliver Einsle at the University of Freiburg's Institute of Biochemistry has long been exploring the functioning of nitrogenase....

Im Focus: The 1 trillion tonne iceberg

Larsen C Ice Shelf rift finally breaks through

A one trillion tonne iceberg - one of the biggest ever recorded -- has calved away from the Larsen C Ice Shelf in Antarctica, after a rift in the ice,...

Im Focus: Laser-cooled ions contribute to better understanding of friction

Physics supports biology: Researchers from PTB have developed a model system to investigate friction phenomena with atomic precision

Friction: what you want from car brakes, otherwise rather a nuisance. In any case, it is useful to know as precisely as possible how friction phenomena arise –...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

»We are bringing Additive Manufacturing to SMEs«

19.07.2017 | Event News

The technology with a feel for feelings

12.07.2017 | Event News

Leipzig HTP-Forum discusses "hydrothermal processes" as a key technology for a biobased economy

12.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Researchers create new technique for manipulating polarization of terahertz radiation

20.07.2017 | Information Technology

High-tech sensing illuminates concrete stress testing

20.07.2017 | Materials Sciences

First direct observation and measurement of ultra-fast moving vortices in superconductors

20.07.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>