NASA Goes To The Birthplace Of Hurricanes | Aero-News Network
Aero-News Network
RSS icon RSS feed
podcast icon MP3 podcast
Subscribe Aero-News e-mail Newsletter Subscribe

** Airborne 09.15.14 ** HD iPad-Friendly -- Airborne 09.15.14 **
** Airborne 09.12.14 ** HD iPad-Friendly -- Airborne 09.12.14 **
** Airborne 09.10.14 ** HD iPad-Friendly -- Airborne 09.10.14 **

Mon, Jul 25, 2005

NASA Goes To The Birthplace Of Hurricanes

Another Mission Launched From Costa Rica

NASA's ER-2 high-altitude weather research plane and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) P3-Orion research aircraft flew several missions July 14, 15 and 16 into the turbulent tropical atmosphere over the eastern Pacific.

The flights were intended to investigate a breeding ground of tropical cyclones -- one of the core goals of NASA's Tropical Cloud Systems and Processes (TCSP) mission, which is being conducted throughout July from San Jose, Costa Rica.

The eastern Pacific is the most concentrated spawning ground of tropical cyclones, otherwise known as hurricanes, on the planet, averaging 10-12 a year. The NOAA's P3 aircraft flew five successive missions, each about eight hours in duration. Two were flown in coordination with the ER-2. The missions commenced July 14 because large-scale conditions in the region suggested birth of a hurricane was imminent.

Just days later, on July 18, Tropical Storm Eugene developed on the far western edge of the TCSP flight zone.

The NOAA's P3 provided data on winds in the lower and middle atmosphere, while the ER-2 supplied data on the entire vertical structure of cloud, precipitation and atmospheric temperature features. During several flights, numerous small-scale circulations were documented within the "Inter-Tropical Convergence Zone," a narrow region where northeasterly and southeasterly winds converge to form thunderstorms. When the vortices coincide with strong thunderstorms, and other large-scale oceanic and atmospheric conditions are favorable, a hurricane can be generated.

Much analysis will be needed to determine if the roots of Eugene's spin can be traced to one of the vortices measured during this intensive period. The ER-2 and NOAA's P3 will provide valuable data on precursor conditions within the broader region where Tropical Storm Eugene developed.

There are different theories on why hurricanes develop in the eastern Pacific. One theory suggests disturbances that perturb the flow in the eastern Pacific arrive in the form of tropical waves from Africa, while another theory suggests the initial source of spin is essentially "homegrown" -- rotation arising from local perturbations in the regional atmosphere.

By combining the rich datasets obtained from the ER-2 and P3 aircraft with data from the unpiloted Aerosonde aircraft -- which also has been flying surveillance missions over the eastern Pacific -- and with numerical prediction models, some answers to the crucial questions of hurricane genesis soon may be forthcoming.

FMI: www.nasa.gov/vision/earth/lookingatearth/hurricane_2005.html

Advertisement

More News

AD: Bombardier, Inc. Airplanes

AD NUMBER: 2013-15-06 PRODUCT: Certain Bombardier, Inc. Model DHC-8-102, -103, -106, -201, -202, -301, -311, and –315 airplanes.>[...]

AD: Dassault Aviation Airplanes

AD NUMBER: 2013-26-05 PRODUCT: All Dassault Aviation Model FAN JET FALCON, FAN JET FALCON SERIES C, D, E, F, and G airplanes; Model MYSTERE-FALCON 200 airplanes; and Model MYSTERE->[...]

ANN's Daily Aero-Linx (09.17.14)

Learn to Fly Blog This blog features writings by aviation authors and flight instructors.>[...]

ANN's Daily Aero-Term (09.17.14): Base Turn

A turn executed by the aircraft during the initial approach between the end of the outbound track and the beginning of the intermediate or final approach track.>[...]

Aero-News: Quote Of The Day (09.17.14)

“In the near future, general aviation manufacturers will be able to certify their products more efficiently and effectively, meaning more safety in more airplanes.” Sou>[...]

blog comments powered by Disqus



Advertisement

Advertisement

Podcasts

Advertisement

© 2007 - 2014 Web Development & Design by Pauli Systems, LC