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RAMMB Scientific Quarterly Report - 4th Quarter FY00

Meteorological


  • Severe Storm

    Weaver, Dostalek, Grasso, Bikos, Motta

    A manuscript describing the 25 May 1999 west Texas severe thunderstorm event is being prepared for presentation at the 18th Conference on Weather Analysis and Forecasting.  Input from forecasters at the 3rd annual High Plains Severe Weather workshop in Great Falls, Montana is being included.  The case focuses on west Texas storms that formed in a weakly-sheared environment, but produced tornadoes and large hail.  For this case, both right- and left-movers were long-lived and severe. Click on images to start loops
     

    Figure 1. 
    Loop of GOES-8 visible imagery 
    from 2045 – 2345 UTC on 25 May 1999

    Figure 2. 
    Loop of GOES-10 visible imagery 
    from 2045 UTC, 25 May – 0000 UTC 26 May 1999.


    A supercell thunderstorm that traveled due south through South Dakota and Nebraska forms the basis for a case study on splitting storms.  The case is important because it occurred during the GOES-11 science test on a day when SRSO (1-min, super rapid-scan operations) and 30-min sounder data were being collected.  The case study will look at value-added to the short term forecast by the satellite sounder. 

    The paper titled “Severe Thunderstorms on 31 May 1996:  A Satellite Training Case” by J. Weaver, J. Dostalek, B. Motta, and J.F.W. Purdom is in press at National Weather Digest.  It is now scheduled to appear in the December 1999 issue (which is currently at the printers).  The most recent issue that was sent out to members was September 1999.

  • Tropical Cyclones

    DeMaria, Zehr, Knaff, Dostalek

    Updates to the real-time AMSU-derived tropical cyclone products continue, see:

    http://www.cira.colostate.edu/ramm/tropic/amsustrm.asp

    In addition, a new product to predict tropical rainfall potential has been created.  The product estimates the 24-hour precipitation potential of a tropical cyclone by integrating the AMSU-derived rainfall rate through a cubic spline derived from the past and current positions and the forecast track of a given tropical cyclone.  An example of the product for Hurricane Irene (1999) can be viewed in rainfall rate and 24-hour rainfall potential shown in Figure 1 and verification in Figure 2.  An evaluation of how well this method estimates rainfall potential is underway.  Click on images to enlarge
     


    Figure 1 

    AMSU-derived rainfall rate valid at 2359 UTC 16 October 1999


    Figure 2 

    AMSU-derived rainfall potential (top) and observe 24-hour rainfall (bottom) for the period ending 0000 UTC 18 October

    The project to archive IR images with tropical cyclones in a common format on CD-ROM continues.  Four km Mercator re-mapped images are saved in MCIDAS format at 30-minute intervals.  As of September 20, 2000, the archive consists of approximately 29,000 images with 120 tropical cyclones on 18 CDs.  A project is underway to incorporate IR satellite imagery into the National Hurricane Center (NHC) operational Statistical Hurricane Prediction Scheme (SHIPS).  Other applications and research topics under investigation with this data set include:  1) motion relative average images, 2) large sample composites 3) IR cloud area vs. tropical cyclone size, 4) detecting rapid intensification, and 5) cloud asymmetry measurements.  Phase 2 of the project is planned for the next several months.  That work includes quality control, data file archiving, and inclusion of “Best Track” data. CIRA student hourly support is being utilized for this work.

    A unique case study of Hurricane Floyd which utilizes wind field information derived from a modified version of the CIMSS wind code that utilizes 3-minute interval super rapid scan images continues.  The case study, which is a collaborative study with C. Velden at CIMMS, focuses on two separate problems.   The first is structure changes related to tropical cyclone life cycle changes. The second focus of this study answers the question, how do changes in upper-level wind fields evolve during intensification?   An example of SRSO winds is shown in Figure 3.
     

    Figure 3
      Example of super high-density winds created from 3 minute interval image data over Hurricane Floyd on 14 September 1404 UTC.  Winds sets were  created for similar time intervals for an eight day period using a modified version of the CIMSS high-density wind code.

    R. Zehr is Co-PI on Tropical Cyclone Project, along with Dr. S. R. Kalsi, of India Meteorological Department, New Delhi.  The Project’s main objective for Year One is to analyze and assess the information content of all available satellite data sets for three case studies of 1999 North Indian Ocean Cyclones.  Meteosat-5 visible, infrared, and water vapor images have been processed for three North Indian intense tropical cyclones from 1999. Those data sets have been archived on CD.  Objective IR intensity time series have been completed.  Requests have been made to obtain other satellite data sets, including scatterometers, microwave imagers, microwave sounder, and satellite high density winds, that are currently not archived at CIRA.  Indian scientists have successfully accessed MCIDAS imagery and other data sets from the CIRA server.

    Datasets for studying global tropical cyclones are being collected and archived in a real-time basis.  Routine datasets include high-density cloud drift winds, ERS-2 and QuikScat winds, hurricane reconnaissance, surface and upper air reports, and AMSU quick look data sets

    Documentation continues on a subclass of tropical cyclones which are symmetric with little or no rainband structure, have large eyes and have maintain intensities of approximately 85% of that which would be expected given the sea surface temperature conditions (see Figure 4).  This work includes collaboration with Jim Kossin of CSU, Mark DeMaria, and Vince Larson of CIRA.  A paper documenting the findings of this study is being prepared for publication.
     


    Figure 4
    x  x Hurricane Howard (1998) on 25 August at 0000 UTC is an example of a nearly symmetric hurricane with a large eye and a maximum intensity of 85 % of its maximum potential intensity as determined from sea surface temperatures. 

    A Tropical Cyclone Genesis Parameter for the Tropical Atlantic has been developed. This method uses GOES-8 imagery and sounder data in combination National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) global analyses to help forecast tropical cyclone formation from tropical waves in the Atlantic basin between Africa and the Caribbean. 

    An article detailing the method has been submitted to Weather and Forecasting.

    Software which converts grib files to packed, encoded ASCII files was adapted for use with GFDL Model output, and will be used to analyze rainfall from tropical cyclones.

  • Extra Tropical Cyclones

    Dostalek

    J. Dostalek attended the PACJET (Pacific Land-falling Jets Experiment) Scientific and Technical Planning Workshop on July 13 and 14 in Boulder.  The meeting was attended by representatives of both the research and operational community and focused on continuing preparations for the upcoming PACJET experiment, to be held January-March 2001.

  • Natural Hazards

    Zehr, Weaver, Connell, Hillger

    B. Connell met with G. Ellrod (NOAA/NESDIS/ORA) at CIRA on September 18, 2000 to review case examples for the publication in progress on GOES multi-channel detection of volcanic ash.  Figure 1 shows a night-time example of cloud ash and meteorological clouds identified using the technique.  Click on images to enlarge
     
     

     Figure 1 
      Night-time example of volcanic ash cloud and meteorological clouds detected using 1) the 10.7 um imagery, 2) the brightness temperature difference for 10.7 – 3.9 um, 3) brightness temperature difference for 10.7 – 12.0 um (otherwise known as the split window technique), and 4) a graph of the various brightness temperature difference vs. temperature at 10.7 um, which highlights the volcanic ash signal.

    Two GOES-10 images that show the forest fires in ID, MT, and WY are provided below.   The first image is a late-day visible albedo image of the smoke from the fires at 0130 UTC on 15 August 2000.  The second is a nighttime shortwave albedo image of the fire hot spots at 0330 UTC, two hours later the same day.  The shortwave albedo is generated from radiances in GOES channel-2 and 4 images.  Both images are zenith-angle-corrected products at 1 km resolution.
     


    0130 UTC 
    15 August 2000

    0330 UTC
    15 August 2000

    Requests for copies of the natural disaster information cards for dispatchers continue to increase.  Most frequent calls come from NWS Warning Coordination Meteorologists and various city and county emergency managers.  So far, the site with various versions of the cards (see below) has been visited over 4,000 times, and there have been over 5,000 downloads  (some visitors downloaded multiple versions).  The cards are based on the NOAA/FEMA/ARC safety booklets, and were reviewed by NWS staff, scientists, emergency managers, as well as FEMA and Red Cross personnel before issuance. The City of Fort Collins site that offers downloadable PDF and HTML versions may be found at:

    http://www.ci.fort-collins.co.us/c_safety/oem/overview_ndic.htm

Applications Development


  • GOES Product Improvement and Development

    GOES Product Improvement and Development

    Hillger

    A revised manuscript entitled, “GOES Derived Product Imagery: Statistical Comparison to Radiosonde Observations and Use in Forecasting Severe Convection along a Dryline” has been resubmitted to Weather and Forecasting.

    In looking for ash plumes from the Soufriere Hills volcano on the island of Montserrat, the appearance of a leeward effect on some of the islands of the Lesser Antilles was noted.  The loop below shows a time sequence of images illustrating the appearance and disappearance of sunglint, or a reflected image of the sun on the smoother ocean surface, in the lee of selected islands.  The three panels in each frame are three Principal Component Images (PCIs) generated from GOES channels 2, 4, and 5.  The sunglint is seen in the upper-right panel, PCI-2, which is basically a channel-2 minus channel-4/5 difference according to the plot in the lower-right corner.  The sunglint is not readily apparent in any of the individual GOES IR channels, but only in this image difference product and to a small degree in the visible image (not shown).


    Sunglint

    Click on image to open Power Point presentation.
    Select Open it and View Show under Slide Show.
    Press Esc to end show.

    Imagery over the Mesa Verde forest fire in southwestern Colorado has been collected and analyzed.  The loop below shows 13 image times from 1645 to 2245 UTC on 24 July 2000.  Three Principal Component Images (PCIs) are shown at each time, generated from GOES channels 2, 4, and 5.  The fire hot-spot and fire-generated cloud are annotated on the last frame.  The fire-generated cloud is unique in that it appears different than the other clouds in PCIs 2 and 3, whereas in PCI-1 the fire-generated cloud looks similar to the other clouds in the area. The last panel in each frame explains the makeup on the PCIs, with PCI-2 as a channel 2 minus channels 4 and 5; and PCI-3 is mainly composed of channel-4 minus channel-5, with little contribution from Ch2.


    Mesa Verde

    See PowerPoint instructions above

  • POES Data and Products

    Hillger

    C. Moeller of CIMSS provided a set of MODIS files to CIRA for multi-spectral testing and program development.  The data will be used by Tomoko Koyama, a M.S. student at CSU’s Department of Atmospheric Science under T.H. Vonder Haar.  Ms. Koyama is being guided by D. Hillger in her research on the spatial and multi-spectral variability of the atmosphere and earth’s surface.  Her thesis will eventually involve working with hyper-spectral interferometric data from the newest satellite instruments.

  • Satellite/Radar

    Satellite/Radar

    Weaver, Dostalek

    Radar and satellite data are being used together to study a case of storm splitting and sever left movers in west Texas on 25 May 1999.  (See Severe Storms)

  • Calibration/Validation

    Hillger

    See results under GOES-11 Science Test.

  • Precipitation

    Knaff, Grasso

    A new tropical rainfall potential product has been created.  The product estimates the 24-hour precipitation potential of a tropical cyclone by integrating the AMSU-derived rainfall rate through a cubic spline derived from the past and current positions and the forecast track of a given tropical cyclone.  These products are updated along with other products.  An evaluation of how well this method estimates rainfall potential is underway.

  • Climatology

    Connell, Combs

    A comparison of high resolution (1-km) visible cloud frequency composites with coarser (4-km) visible cloud frequency composites is being performed for 2 years (June, July, and August of 1998-1999) of the Summer sea-breeze project over the Tallahassee WFO (TLH).  The comparison is being conducted to provide a check on the processing of the two different data sets and to get a better feel for the scale of features captured in each set.  Click on image to enlarge
     


    Figure 1
          A comparison of monthly cloud frequency for August 1999 for 3 times (14, 16, and 18 UTC) derived from high resolution 1-km visible imagery and 4-km sampled visible imagery.  The two data sets were processed independently and used similar techniques.  The test area is centered over the Tallahassee WFO.

    Processing of the U.S. climatologies continued mostly on schedule. Increased noise in the GOES 10 imagery has required extra time and effort in the quality control phase.  Products produced include monthly large sector composites for June, July, and August 2000, and wind regime composites for May and June 2000.  Three year wind regime composites have been delayed until we have caught up with large sector and wind regime processing.

    C.  Combs met again with Mike Weiland and Rich Bann from the NWS Cheyenne office.  They are interested in thunderstorm development over the Pine Ridge area of east central Wyoming and northwest Nebraska.  Summer time wind regime composites for the North Platte station were produced for May-Sep 1998 and 1999.  While there are significantly more cases than the earlier Cheyenne composites for 1999, we did not see the pattern they were expecting.  One possible explanation is that there were more frontal passage cases than convection cases in the set.  We will run composites for June-August to see if that will reduce the number of the frontal passage cases without decreasing the overall number of cases too significantly.

    Processing for the Wakefield, VA project is continuing.  General wind regime composites covering a large sector around the Wakefield area have been created to give the researchers a basis for suggesting modifications.  These images are being processed into gifs and will soon be available for viewing on CIRA’s website.

  • Lake Effect Snow

    Bikos and Weaver

    The beta-version of the VISIT lake-effect snow training session has been completed and will be administered starting in October. 

  • Mesoscale Modeling

    Grasso, Weaver

    Current work is concentrating on left moving thunderstorms.  Documented left moving thunderstorms are few in the literature. Our goal is to improve the documentation by reporting on left movers that were detected by GOES imagery and WSR-88D radar.  Figure 1 shows an example of the splitting of a storm that was a left-mover from a previous split (the York County storm). Click on image to enlarge
     

    Figure 1
         A time sequence of the GOES-8 1 km visible images at (a) 2255, (b) 2259, © 2304, and (d) 2309 UTC 17 May 1996. Dark arrow is used to denote the location of the overshooting top of the new right moving storm that split from the York County storm.

Outside Interaction


  • National Labs

    Zehr

    D. Bikos and L. Grasso are investigating  the 11 May, 2000 left-moving supercell over Iowa. A collaborative effort with J. Ladue (OSF) and D. Hillger will look at this case in greater detail.

  • Universities

    Zehr, Grasso, Weaver, Motta

    Cooperative research and interaction continues with Dr. William Gray’s project at CSU. The focus is on providing satellite data information to aid in their ongoing hurricane research using aircraft flight level and GPS dropsonde data sets.

    L. Grasso continues to collaborate with doctoral students on the numerical simulations of convective storms.

    M. DeMaria continues to work with J. DeMuth, an MS student at CSU, on the development of AMSU wind retrieval techniques.

    B.  Motta reviewed CSU graduate student Ben Ruston’s MS thesis presentation.  Some of the presentation graphics that Ben developed will be used in upcoming VISIT training sessions to explain GOES water vapor imagery from the imager and sounder.

  • Other NESDIS

    Molenar

    A paper entitled “An example of temperature structure differences in two cyclones systems derived from the advanced microwave sounder unit” was published in the August issue of Weather and Forecasting, pages 476-483. Authors of the paper include J. Knaff, S. Kidder, CIRA, R. Zehr, E/RA2, M. Goldberg, ORA/CRAD).
    B. Motta met with A. Gruber and B. Kuligowski of NESDIS/ORA to discuss the status of the Autoestimator, its performance, and possible teletraining.

    Support has been provided to the University of Santa Clara to configure a RAMSDIS system supported by a NESDIS Grant.  UCSC is planning to develop a shuttle instrument and will use RAMSDIS to determine instrument targets.

    B. Motta met with Jim Gurka to examine readily-available examples of fog cases and develop a list which can be developed for use in the National Weather Service Professional Development Series on fog.  The initial case and forecast problem will be sea fog.

  • NWS

    Dostalek, Motta, Molenar, Weaver, Bikos, Connell, DeMaria, Zajac

     

    D. Bikos and J. Weaver are working with Dave Barjenbruch (NWS/BOU) on the human factors of forecasting.  Two case studies being studied involve snowfall events during March 2000.

    J. Weaver and J. Dostalek continue their work with Loren Phillips, SOO at Lubbock, TX, on the 25 May 1999 thunderstorm case.  See Lubbock Dryline Experiment.

    Rich Grumm, the NWS Science and Operations Officer from State College, PA visited the RAMM/VISIT group to collaborate on new training for the fall/winter season.  The new training will address use of satellite and model data together in AWIPS.  A trip to COMET allowed us to make graphics from additional cases which cannot be viewed at RAMM/CIRA due to disk space limitations.  Two or more training sessions and a paper are likely to result from this interaction.

    Shortwave albedo images generated from GOES channels 2 and 4 for the 11/12 May 2000 severe storm outbreak over Kansas and Iowa were made available to Jim Ladue at the NWS Operational Support Facility in Normal OK.  This is a step in closer cooperation on storm research using experimental image products developed by CIRA/RAMMT.

    GOES-8 visible and 10.7 µm were collected and archived at CIRA for June- August, 2000 for the Tallahassee weather forecast area in support of the Florida Summer Sea Breeze Satellite Climatology Project.  Ken Gould with the Tallahassee WFO (TLH)continues to be the focal point for the project in Florida.  This season of data brings the total archive to 5 summers (1996-2000)  The project’s primary focus is on developing cloud frequency composites stratified by wind regime to be used as a tool in forecasting weather.  Monthly composites are also proving useful in looking at dominant synoptic weather patterns.  Over this past summer, forecasters at TLH used composites from the previous 4 years to ‘fine tune’ short-term, zone, marine, and aviation forecasts.  A paper entitled “High Resolution GOES-8 Visible and Infrared Cloud Frequency Composites over Northern Florida During the Summers 1996-1999″ is going through internal review and will be submitted shortly to Weather and Forecasting.  The paper highlights the wind regime stratified climatology comparing results of both the visible and infrared cloud frequency methods.  Click on image to enlarge
     

    Figure 1

     

    GOES-8 visible cloud frequency composites for 2015 UTC for a) regime 1(lgt. SE flow), b) regime 2 E to NE flow), c) regime 8 (N to NW flow), and d) regime 4 (W to SW flow).  The number of images that went into creating each composite is shown in the lower left corner of each image.  The study period includes June through August for 1996-1999.

  • International Activities

    Connell, Smith, Knaff, Molenar

    Richard Francis (the EUMETSAT User Service Manager) visited CIRA on August 21st to discuss possible collaboration on satellite training activities. CIRA personnel demonstrated a RAMSDIS system that will be shipped to EUMETSAT, and presented overviews of ongoing national and international training activities. The GOES satellite data archive for climatological studies was also summarized.

    On August 1, 2000, Rosario Alfaro joined the CIRA team as a visiting scientist.  Rosario comes from the Costa Rica meteorological forecast office and is now working with the Hydrology Team and the RAMM Team on the development of satellite precipitation algorithms for Central America.

    A RAMSDIS workstation has been shipped to Nairobi, Kenya.  RAMSDIS-NT software has been sent to Tokyo, Japan.  The RAMSDIS workstation for Nanjing, China is configured and ready for shipment as soon as Custom’s Issues are worked out.

    R. Zehr has been invited as expert lecturer for the WMO / Bureau of Meteorology Fourth Southern Hemisphere Training Course on Tropical Cyclones.  The topics include satellite applications to forecasting tropical cyclone genesis and intensity. A new detailed outline was prepared and provided to the course organizers.  The course is to be held in Melbourne, Australia, October 16-27, 2000.

    The final details of warranty support and repair issues has been resolved for Gateway computer systems to support the Hurricane Mitch project.

    Development of satellite climatology/composites continues with both Barbados and Costa Rica.  See the WMO section under RESEARCH (Outside Interaction- International Activities) for more information.

    RMTC Project:

    GOES-8 imagery for June 2000 through August, 2000 were sent to the Regional Meteorological Training Center (RMTC) in Costa Rica.  This is one project of the cooperative efforts between CIRA and the RMTC.  The archives started in December 1996 and are being used for cloud frequency studies during the rainy and dry seasons.  The archives are also being used as a training tool for student projects.  Click on images to enlarge
     

    Figure 1
      Monthly cloud frequency composites over Central America for June – August 1997-2000 by 10.7 um temperature threshold technique (threshold=273 K).

    GOES-8 imagery for June 2000 through August 2000 were sent to the Regional Meteorological Training Center (RMTC) in Barbados to develop satellite climatology composites for the region.  A comparison of cloud frequency derived by temperature threshold of 10.7 µm imagery for June – August of 1999 – 2000 is shown in Figure 2.  The archived imagery also provides access to examples for use in satellite focused training efforts.
     

    Figure 2
      Monthly cloud frequency derived by temperature threshold of 10.7 um imagery (283 K) for June – August of 1999 – 2000 for the eastern Caribbean.

    A New Regional Meteorological Training Center (RMTC)  RAMSDIS online has been developed for distributing GOES-8 visible, 3.9 um, 6.7 um, and 10.7 um imagery to WMO Region III and IV countries in Caribbean, Central and South American Countries.  There are many countries that have either slow Internet connections or still rely on modem connections.  The new RMTC RAMSDIS Online is running on McIDAS NT and creates images in the jpeg format allowing for smaller size images and faster download.  This effort is part of ongoing international activities with the Costa Rica and Barbados RMTCs to promote better use of satellite imagery in forecasting activities.

  • Miscellaneous

    DeMaria, Motta, Molenar, Watson, Dostalek, Weaver, Zehr, Hillger, Zajac, Gosden


    D. Bikos reviewed a paper for the National Weather Digest entitled “Use of GOES Sounder Data to Forecast a Winter Convective Heavy Rain/Flash Flood Event in the Mississippi Valley” by Charles Kadin and Shledon Kusselson.  The authors made the revisions suggested.

    Meetings/Conferences:
     

    Traveler Destination Meetings, Conferences, Courses Funding Dates Trip Reports
    Weaver, J. Great Falls, MT 4th Annual Great Divide Workshop  BASE Sep 12-14
    Report 
    B. Motta
    B. Zajac
    D. Bikos
    Madison, WI IST/VISIT Meeting
    VISIT
    Aug 15-18
    IST/VIS Report IT Meeting
    M. DeMaria
    D. Hillger
    J. Knaff
    B. Connell
    L. Grasso
    K. Fryer
    Pingree Park, CO CIRA Annual Retreat
    CIRA
    July 26-28 x
    J. Dostalek Boulder, CO PACJET Meetings x July 13 & 14
     Report Report

    Visitors:
     

    Visitor(s) Date of Visit Affiliation RAMMT Contact
    Scott Fulton September 28/29 Clarkson University, Potsdam, NY M. DeMaria
    Loren Phillips September 21/22 NWS/ Lubbock, TX J. Dostalek
    Arnie Gruber September 18 Hydrology Team, NOAA/NESDIS/ORA/ARAD
    Washington, DC
    M. DeMaria
    Leroy Spayd September 8 NWS Headquarters, Washington, DC M. DeMaria
    Richard Francis August 21 EUMETSAT M. DeMaria
    D. Barjenbruch August 14 NWS/Denver-Boulder, CO J. Weaver

Field Experiments


  • HRD and CAMEX

    Gosden, Watson

    A new version of Tropical RAMSDIS has been used for this year’s hurricane season. It was implemented at HRD in early June.  Scatterometer, satellite winds, and several objective analyses are also being ingested and can be displayed with the imagery.  The reliability of this year’s Tropical RAMSDIS with respect to outages, has improved significantly.  During the 2001 Hurricane Season, Hurricane Research Division’s field experiment activities will be expanded and conducted in collaboration with CAMEX-4 (Convective and Mesoscale Experiment).  CIRA will again coordinate scheduling and collection of RSO and SRSO data sets.

  • Brazil Fire Project

    Connell, Gosden

    Jack Dostalek and Hiro Gosden provided training on the RAMSDIS systems delivered to two locations in Brazil, Instituto Brasileiro do Meio Ambiente e dos Recursos Naturais Renováveis (IBAMA, or Brazilian Institute of the Environment and Renewable Natural Resources) in Brasilia, and Centro de Previsão de Tempo e Estudos Climáticos (CPTEC, or Center for Weather Forecasts and Climate Studies) in São José dos Campos.  The overall training went well and the scientists picked up on the material relatively fast.  Short term troubleshooting and programming support will be provided until on site proficiency in RAMSDIS usage is obtained.

    Software modifications were made to the fire detection routine loaded on two RAMSDIS systems sent to Brazil.  Changes included day/night determination by solar zenith angle instead of fixed times, as well as the capability of displaying the detected fires on different background images.

  • Lubbock Dryline Experiment

    Weaver, Dostalek

    J. Weaver and J.  Dostalek began a paper for presentation at the next Weather Analysis and Forecasting conference (see severe weather above).  J.  Dostalek and L Grasso have begun writing the first draft of a modeling study for Monthly Weather Review based on the severe weather outbreak in west Texas on 25 May 1999.

  • Severe Thunderstorm Electrification and Precipitation Study (STEPS) 2000

    Zajac, Weaver, Bikos

    The RAMM Team supported STEPS by providing real-time satellite loops from RAMSDIS On-Line, including imagery from GOES Rapid Scan Operations.  In addition, digital McIDAS satellite data and AWIPS data was archived from six days.  These data can be used for research and training purposes.

    Future research and training efforts on STEPS will be guided by interaction with meteorologists at the American Geophysical Union 2000 Fall Meeting held during December in San Francisco.  A special session on STEPS is planned, which will provide opportunities for guidance and collaboration.  B. Zajac will attend this meeting/session and present research related to STEPS.

  • GOES-11 Science Test

    Knaff, Weaver, Hillger

    Special GOES-11 SRSO data were collected for three consecutive days for the period 1915UTC 24 July – 1853 UTC 27 July.  The focus area for these days were 1) a long-lived supercell thunderstorm transversing South Dakota and Nebraska (24 July), 2) Major Hurricane Daniel (25 July) and 3) severe weather associated with a frontal system in Iowa (26 July). In addition GOES-11 imager and sounder were examined for noise (imager), striping (imager) and temporal variability (sounder). 

    The calibration coefficients for the GOES-11 Imager were acquired from Mike Weinreb and have been incorporated into the day/night and shortwave albedo programs used on RAMSDIS.  Until these coefficient were obtained, the albedo programs defaulted to GOES-9 calibration, producing slightly incorrect albedos.

     

    Noise was computed using spatial structure analysis on a 50 x 50 pixel area of space-view data for 10 consecutive images at approximate 15 minute intervals between 1300 and 1600 UTC.  Compared to previous GOES (8, 9, and 10), GOES-11 noise appears to be on the low side for channel-4 and within the range of previous values for the other channels (2, 3, and 5).  Results have been shared with UW/CIMSS and the Office of Satellite Operations.

    Noise levels for the GOES-11 Sounder have been estimated using spatial structure analysis on space-view data for a 24-hour period between 1900 UTC 7 July 2000 and 1900 UTC 8 July 2000.  Results, which are quite stable over time and are compared to radiance noise estimates generated by T. Schmit at UW/CIMSS, are available (see Results website above).

    Initial determinations of detector-to-detector striping in GOES-11 infrared imagery have been performed and are available (see Results website above).  Striping was computed using a statistical comparison of adjacent image scan lines on a 50 x 200 pixel area of space-view data for 10 consecutive images at approximate 15 minute intervals between 1300 and 1600 UTC.  Striping appears to make only a small contribution to the noise for channel 2 but is a significant fraction of noise for channels 4 and 5.  Results have been shared with UW/CIMSS and the Office of Satellite Operations.

    Special 10-minute-interval Sounder data collected during the GOES-11 checkout period were analyzed to determine the temporal variability of all bands.  The analysis indicated that 1 hour intervals are sufficient to capture the temporal variability in many of the Sounder bands.  However, for the longwave IR bands (5, 6, 7, and 8) the temporal variability is quite large and more frequent measurements, at 20 minute time interval or less, are required to capture the measured variability with a 0.85 correlation (72% explained variance).

Future Systems & Sensors


  • Instrument Planning

    Hillger

    A written summary/table of the basic capabilities of current and future operational and experimental satellites has been prepared. This summary was prepared to assist the RAMM Team in responding to the ORA request to provide speculation on future research directions for the next 5-10 years. This summary was shared with other ORA teams.

Technology Transfer & Training


  • Satellite Interpretation Discussion

    Grasso

    An SID was prepared for the supercell thunderstorm that traveled due south through South Dakota and Nebraska forms the basis for a case study on splitting storms.  The case is important because it occurred during the GOES-11 science test on a day when SRSO (1-min, super rapid-scan operations) and 30-min sounder data were being collected.  The case study will look at value-added to the short term forecast by the satellite sounder.

  • RAMSDIS

    Molenar, Connell, Dostalek, Gosden, Smith, Hillger

     

    A New Regional Meteorological Training Center (RMTC)  RAMSDIS online has been developed for distributing GOES-8 visible, 3.9 um, 6.7 um, and 10.7 um imagery to WMO Region III and IV countries in Caribbean, Central and South American Countries.  There are many countries that have either slow Internet connections or still rely on modem connections.  The new RMTC RAMSDIS Online is running on McIDAS NT and creates images in the jpeg format allowing for smaller size images and faster download.  This effort is part of ongoing international activities with the Costa Rica and Barbados RMTCs to promote better use of satellite imagery in forecasting activities.

    RAMSDIS Online provided coverage during the GOES-11 checkout period.  Included were satellite channels 1 through 4, covering both large and small sectors.

  • RAMSDIS Online

    Watson, Hillger

    A New Regional Meteorological Training Center (RMTC)  RAMSDIS online has been developed for distributing GOES-8 visible, 3.9 um, 6.7 um, and 10.7 um imagery to WMO Region III and IV countries in Caribbean, Central and South American Countries.  There are many countries that have either slow Internet connections or still rely on modem connections.  The new RMTC RAMSDIS Online is running on McIDAS NT and creates images in the jpeg format allowing for smaller size images and faster download.  This effort is part of ongoing international activities with the Costa Rica and Barbados RMTCs to promote better use of satellite imagery in forecasting activities.

    RAMSDIS Online provided coverage during the GOES-11 checkout period.  Included were satellite channels 1 through 4, covering both large and small sectors.

  • VISIT

    Motta, Bikos, Zajac, Weaver, Zehr

    During this quarter 22 VISIT teletraining sessions were conducted.  Ninety-two NWS offices participated in these sessions (some offices took more than one session). Also, for the first time we had participants from Environment Canada offices (Edmonton and the Marine Weather Center).

    A new VISIT training session on Subtropical Cyclones, has been completed with the assistance and review of personnel from the TPC (Tropical Prediction Center).  This was in response to  requests from NWS Tropical Prediction Center (TPC) and NESDIS Satellite Analysis Branch.  This training session awaits minimal changes and is to be presented in late 2000.   B. Motta, R. Zehr, M. DeMaria, and J. Knaff contributed.

    D. Bikos and J. Weaver have completed the beta-version of a lake-effect snow teletraining session.  This training session has been a collaborative effort with several NWS forecasters (Tom Niziol, Dick Wagenmaker, Julie Adolphson, Ed Mahoney, Jeff Waldstreicher, John Quinlan) as well as people from the training centers (Greg Byrd, Jim Ladue).  The session was completed this quarter and will be administered starting in October (also the start of the lake-effect snow season for the Great Lakes).

    B. Zajac has developed a two-part teletraining session on lightning meteorology.  Part One describes thunderstorm electrification and then discusses lightning activity in storms ranging in spatial scale from isolated airmass thunderstorms to mesoscale convective systems.  Part Two discusses lightning activity from storms ranging in intensity from isolated airmass thunderstorms to severe thunderstorms.  The two-part session is currently in review and will be offered as VISIT teletraining next quarter (1st quarter FY 2001).

    The following table refers to the total number of VISIT teletraining sessions April 1999 through September 2000.
     

    x
    Sessions
    Number of offices
    attending
    Unique responses received
    Responses received (includes more than one reply from an office) 
    Certificates Issued
    Total 150 622 385 602 1879
    Enhanced-V 26 88 56 93 271
    Boundaries 1 12 62 40 61 225
    LTO 17 67 46 67 185
    Lightning  16 86 53 90 283
    RSO 20 62 44 71 213
    Tropical 6 31 14 21 78
    Enhancements 9 47 27 47 108
    Meso Ascent 17 55 28 44 167
    Meso Tools 5 54 35 50 201
    Boundaries 2 6 31 16 25 80
    QuikSCAT 3 15 9 11 31
    NDIC 13 24 17 22 37

    NDIC 13 24 17 22 37
    Examples were added from the Atlantic hurricanes to the QuikScat session developed by K Schrab of NWS WR SSD.

    Leroy Spayd, the acting director for training within the National Weather Service (NWS), visited the RAMM Team on September 8th. Several Virtual Institute for Sensor Integration Training (VISIT) sessions that are being prepared by RAMM Team staff were reviewed. Future plans for training within the NWS were also discussed.

    B. Motta, D. Bikos, and B. Zajac attended the IST-PDS semi-annual meeting in Madison, WI on 16-17 August.  Attendees included most of the VISIT group and Science Operation Officers from NWS WFO State College and Milwaukee.

    Web versions of certain VISIT sessions may be visited at the following addresses:

    Boundary Detection:

    http://www.cira.colostate.edu/ramm/visit/boundaries1/title.asp

    CONUS Cloud to Ground Lightning Climatology:

    http://www.cira.colostate.edu/ramm/visit/lightning/title.asp

    Convective Initiation by Low-Level Boundaries:

    http://www.ssec.wisc.edu/visit/lessons/bndry2/viewmaster.html

    Rapid Scan Operations:

    http://www.cira.colostate.edu/ramm/visit/rso/title.asp

    Tropical Satellite Imagery and Products:

    http://www.cira.colostate.edu/ramm/visit/tropical/title.asp

    Detecting Boundaries:

    http://www.cira.colostate.edu/ramm/visit/boundaries1/title.asp

    Elevated Mesoscale Ascent:

    http://www.cira.colostate.edu/ramm/visit/ascent/title.asp

    GOES enhancements/color tables in AWIPS

    http://www.cira.colostate.edu/ramm/visit/istpds/awips/awips_1.html

    Lake-effect snow (student guide, web based session link temporarily on this page):

    http://www.cira.colostate.edu/ramm/visit/lake-effect.html

    Mesoscale Analyses and Techniques:

    http://www.cira.colostate.edu/ramm/visit/mesoana/title.asp

    NDIC:

    http://www.cira.colostate.edu/ramm/visit/ndic/title.asp

    QuikSCAT:

    http://www.cira.colostate.edu/ramm/visit/qscat/title.asp

  • Community Outreach

    Weaver, Knaff

    J. Weaver continues as the NOAA representative on the City of Fort Collins’ Project Impact steering committee.  Project Impact is a FEMA-funded effort which provides “seed money” to several cities in each state to develop innovative ideas for disaster mitigation.  His goal is to get FEMA to think of weather  information as a potential mitigation tool.  Part of this effort includes the Natural Disaster Information Card series (see VISIT)

    B. Motta, at the request of several broadcast meteorologists,  spoke with the commercial weather vendor companies about their possible generation and distribution of the fog/stratus product and rapid scan operations imagery from GOES.  Many vendors were unaware of these special data which the National Weather Service now makes use of on a regular basis with RAMSDIS and AWIPS.  E-mail exchanges have already begun with the vendors, and WSI currently offers the fog product to their customers.

     J.  Weaver met with management staff from the Loveland CO Agilent Corporation (a wholly-owned subsidiary of Hewlett-Packard).  The purpose of the meeting was to take the first steps in designing a weather safety program for the company.  Agilent now has nearly 4,000 employees in Fort Collins, 4,800 employees in Loveland, and an additional 2,500 in Colorado Springs.  The goal is to design a program that provides information for all three sites.  Security staff from all three will be trained in Fort Collins or Loveland yearly.  Plant-specific emergency severe weather plans will be written by the emergency manager at each site, and be reviewed by Weaver.

    J. Knaff and J. Weaver prepared and delivered presentations discussing Hurricanes and Severe Weather, respectively,  for Colorado State University’s Kids in College program.  Presentations lasted about one and a half hours each and were given the weeks of 19th and 26th of June and 19th of July.

    J. Weaver met with a Discovery-Health channel video production team to conduct a tour of sites that experienced significant flooding during the 28 July 1997 Fort Collins flood.  He also briefed the team on the general weather situation, as well as showing them the list of watches and warnings issued by the National Weather Service, and describing how the 9:40 p.m. flood warning played a role in community response and saving lives.  Finally, he introduced them to a number of residents affected by the flood as potential participants in their final production when taping begins in September.

  • Publications

    Publications
    Fryer

    Published:

    (See also Accepted and Submitted)

    Chase, T.N., R.A. Pielke, J.A. Knaff, T.G.G. Kittel, J.L. Eastman, 2000: A comparison of Regional Trends in 1979-1997 depth-averaged tropospheric temperatures.  Int. J. Climatol., 20, 503-518.

    Grasso, L.D., 2000: The dissipation of a left moving cell in a severe storm envirnoment. Mon. Wea. Rev., 2797-2815.

    Grasso, L.D., 2000: A numerical simulation of dryline sensitivity to soil moisture. Mon. Wea. Rev.,2816-2834.

    Knaff, J.A. and J.W. Weaver, 2000: A mesoscale low-level thunderstorm outflow boundary associated with Hurricane Luis.  (Picture of the Month), Mon. Wea. Rev., 128:9, 3352-3355.

    Knaff, J.A., R.M. Zehr, M.D. Goldberg, and S.Q. Kidder, 2000:  An example of temperature structure differences in two cyclone systems derived from the Advance Microwave Sounder Unit. Weather and Forecasting, 15 (4),476-483.

    Landsea, C.W., and J.A. Knaff, 2000:  How much skill was there in forecasting the great 1997-98 El Nino?, Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 2107-2119.

     


    Accepted:

    Campbell, G.G. and J.F.W. Purdom, 2000:  Asynchronous stereo height and motion retrieval from satellite observations. J. of Atmos. and Oceanic Technology.

    DeMaria, M., and R.E. Tuleya, 2001:  Evaluation of quantitative precipitation forecasts from the GFDL hurricane model.  Precipitation of Extremes: Prediction, Impacts, and Responses, 81st Annual AMS Meeting, 14-19 January, Albuquerque, NM, Amer. Meteor. Soc.

    Chase, T.N., J.A. Knaff, and R.A. Pielke Sr., 2001:  Changes in global monsoon circulations: Evidence for a diminishing hydrological cycle?   Int. J. Climatol.

    Chase, T.N., J.A. Knaff, and R.A. Pielke, 2001: Trends in global monsoon circulations: Evidence for a diminished hydrological cycle? 12th Symposium on Global Change Studies and Climate Variations – 81st Annual AMS Meeting, 14-19 January, Albuquerque, NM, Amer. Meteor. Soc.

    Kidder, S.Q., J.A. Knaff, and S.J. Kusselson, 2001:  Using AMSU data to forecast precipitation from landfalling hurricanes. Precipitation of Extremes: Prediction, Impacts, and Responses -81st Annual AMS Meeting, 14-19 January, Albuquerque, NM, Amer. Meteor. Soc.

    Landsea, C.W., and J.A. Knaff, 2001:  How much “skill” was there in forecasting the strong 1997-98 El Nino and 1998-2000 La Nina events? Climate Variability, the Ocean, and Societal Impacts – 81st Annual AMS Meeting, 14-19 January, Albuquerque, NM, Amer. Meteor. Soc.

    Motta, B.C., D.E. Bikos, B.A. Zajac, S. Bachmeier, T. Whittaker, B. Grant, J. LaDue, A. Mostek, P. Wolf, J.F. Weaver, and R.M. Zehr, 2001:  Recent training and results from the Virtual Institute for Satellite Integration Training. 17th International Conference on Interactive Information and Processing Systems (IIPS) – 81st Annual AMS Meeting, 14-19 January, Albuquerque, NM, Amer. Meteor. Soc.

    Motta, B.C., D.E. Bikos, B.A. Zajac, S. Bachmeier, T. Whittaker, B. Grant, J. LaDue, A. Mostek, P. Wolf, J.F. Weaver, and R.M. Zehr, 2001:  Recent training and results from the Virtual Institute for Satellite Integration Training. 10th Symposium on Education – 81st Annual AMS Meeting, 14-19 January, Albuquerque, NM, Amer. Meteor. Soc.

    Pielke, R.A., T.N. Chase, T.G.F. Kittel, J.A. Knaff, and J. Eastman, 2000: Analysis of 200 mb zonal wind for the period 1958-1997.   Climate Dynamics.

    Scofield, R.A., M. DeMaria, and R.M. Alfaro., 2001:  Space-based rainfall capabilities in hurricanes offshore and inland.  Precipitation of Extremes: Prediction, Impacts, and Responses, 81st Annual AMS Meeting, 14-19 January, Albuquerque, NM, Amer. Meteor. Soc.

    Weaver, J.F., J.F. Dostalek, B.C. Motta, and J.F.W. Purdom, 2000:  Severe thunderstorms on 31 May 1996: A satellite training case.  National Weather Digest.

    Weaver, J.F., E. Gruntfest, and G.M. Levy, 2000:  Two floods in Fort Collins: Learning from a natural disaster. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc.

    Zajac, B.A. and S. A. Rutledge, 1999:  Cloud-to-ground lightning activity in the contiguous United States from 1995-1997.  Mon. Wea. Rev.

     


    Submitted:

    DeMaria, M., J.A. Knaff, and B.H. Connell, 2000:A tropical cyclone genesis parameter for the Tropical Atlantic, Weather and Forecasting.

    Dostalek, J.F., and T.J. Schmit, 2000: GOES sounder derived product imagery: comparisons to radiosondes and use in forecasting severe convection. Weather and Forecasting.

    Grasso, L.D., 2000: Simulation of a left moving cell following storm splitting.  Mon. Wea. Rev.

    Grasso, L.D. and E.R. Hilgendorf, 2000: Observations of anvil reflectivity at 3.9 um using GOES imagery.  Weather and Forecasting.

    Grasso, L.D. and J.F. Weaver, 2000: Horizontal vorticity budget along a simulated supercell outflow boundary.  Mon. Wea. Rev.

    Hillger, D.W., 2001: Detection of important atmospheric and surface features by employing principal component image
    transformation of GOES imagery.  IEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing.

    Knaff, J.A., and R.M. Zehr, 2000: Short-term oscillations of deep convection associated with tropical cyclones. Mon. Wea. Rev.

    Pielke, R.A., T.N. Chase, T.G.F. Kittel, J.A. Knaff, and J. Eastman, 2000: Analysis of 200 mb zonal wind for the period 1958-1997.  Climate Dynamics.

  • Training

    Fryer

    Received:
     

    Participant Dates Place Course
    D. Hillger
    August
    Colorado State University Microsoft Access database software
    D. Hillger
    July
    Colorado State University Adobe Photoshop software

Infrastructure


  • Systems Administration

    Molenar, Gosden

    A great deal of time has been devoted to tightening RAMM Team computer security due to the increase in illegal system access.  Access to the RAMM Team HPs has been restricted to specific machines.  Anonymous FTP service has been eliminated on Windows systems.  New virus scanning software with an autoupdate feature to allow for automatic downloading of the most recent virus fixes has been distributed to all staff for installing on Windows systems.  Additional account restrictions will be added to OS/2 machines.

    A few major events such as power outage/surge, network irregularity, and hardware failures kept the system administration staff busy with troubleshooting, repairs, and reconfigurations of systems.

    Richard Francis (the EUMETSAT User Service Manager) visited CIRA on August 21st to discuss possible collaboration on satellite training activities. CIRA personnel demonstrated a RAMSDIS system that will be shipped to EUMETSAT, and presented overviews of ongoing national and international training activities. The GOES satellite data archive for climatological studies was also summarized.

    A RAMSDIS workstation has been shipped to Nairobi, Kenya.  RAMSDIS-NT software has been sent to Tokyo, Japan.  The RAMSDIS workstation for Nanjing, China is configured and ready for shipment as soon as Custom’s Issues are worked out.

    The final details of warranty support and repair issues has been resolved for Gateway computer systems to support the Hurricane Mitch project.

  • Data Infrastructure

    Watson, Smith

    The GOES-11 checkout period provided three interesting 1 minute data sets that were archived.  They include a Midwest severe storm,  an East Coast ‘bow’ event, and hurricane Daniel coverage.

  • Administration

    DeMaria, Molenar, Fryer, Grasso

    A Letter of Intent was submitted to the NOAA Environmental Services Data and Management (ESDIM) Program.  ESDIM funding was requested for a Redundant Array of Inexpensive Disks (RAID) system to support Advanced Weather Interactive Processing System (AWIPS) case study development and archive.  Two proposals were also submitted to the NOAA High Performance Computing Committee (HPCC).  Those proposals requested funding for distributed processing of multi-sensor data sets and for local Intranet development.  A proposal for a Pioneer Grant to fund improvements to the RAMSDIS On-Line (ROL) software has been submitted.

    Preliminary performance evaluation meetings were held for all NOAA RAMM Team staff.

Miscellaneous


  • Travel

    Fryer

     

    Team Member
    Destination
     Purpose
     Funding 
    Dates
    H. Gosden Sao Paulo and Brasilia, Brazil RAMSDIS installation Brazil Fires  August 14-21 
    J. Dostalek Sao Paulo and Brasilia, Brazil RAMSDIS installation Brazil Fires  August 14-20 
    B. Motta Madison, WI IST PDS Meeting VISIT  August 15-18 
    D. Bikos Madison, WI IST PDS Meeting VISIT  August 15-18
    B. Zajac Madison, WI IST PDS Meeting VISIT  August 15-18 
    J. Weaver Great Falls, MT Great Divide Workshop BASE  September 11-15

  • List of Acronyms

    Fryer

    AMS:  American Meteorological Society

    AMSU:  Advanced Microwave Sounding Unit

    ARAD:  Atmospheric Research and Applications Division

    AWIPS: Advanced Weather Interactive Processing System

    CAMEX:  Convection and Moisture Experiment

    CG: Cloud to Ground

    CIMSS: Cooperative Institute for Meteorological Satellite Studies

    CIRA: Cooperative Institute for Research in the Atmosphere

    COMET: Cooperative Program for Operational Meteorology, Education, and Training

    CONUS: Continental U.S.

    CRAD:  Climate Research and Applications Division

    CSU:  Colorado State University

    EUMETSAT:  European Meteorological Satellite

    FEMA:  Federal Emergency Management Agency

    FTP: File Transfer Protocol

    GIMPAP: Goes I-M Product Assurance Plan

    GOES: Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite

    HRD:  Hurricane Research Division

    IR: Infrared

    LAPS: Local Analysis and Prediction System

    LES:  Lake Effect Snow

    McIDAS: Man Computer Interactive Data Access System

    NASA:  National Aeronautics and Space Administration

    NCAR: National Center for Atmospheric Research

    NDIC: Natural Disaster Information Cards

    NESDIS: National Environmental Satellite Data Information Service

    NHC: National Hurricane Center

    NIDS: NEXRAD Information Dissemination Service

    NOAA:  National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

    NWS: National Weather Service

    NWSFO: National Weather Service Forecast Office

    OM:  Office of Meteorology

    ORA:  Office of Research and Applications

    PACJET: Pacific Landfalling Jets Experiment

    POES: Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite

    POP: Product Oversight Panel

    RAMMT: Regional and Mesoscale Meteorology Team

    RAMS:  Regional Atmospheric Modeling System

    RAMSDIS: Regional and Mesoscale Meteorology Team Advanced Meteorological Satellite Demonstration and Interpretation System

    RMTC: Regional Meteorological Training Center

    ROL: RAMSDIS Online

    SAB: Satellite Applications Branch

    SOCC: Satellite Operations Control Center

    SOO: Science Operations Officer

    SRSO/RSO: Super Rapid Scan Operation/Rapid Scan Operation

    STEPS: Severe Thunderstorm Electrification and Preciptation Study

    TPC: Tropical Prediction Center

    USWRP: United States Weather Research Program

    UTC:  Universal Time Coordinated

    VISIT: Virtual Institute for Satellite Integration Training

    WMO: World Meteorological Organization

    WV:  Water Vapor