58 The Role of Low-Level Thermal Instability on Tornado Intensity

Monday, 5 November 2012
Symphony III and Foyer (Loews Vanderbilt Hotel)
Nicholas L. Hampshire, NOAA/NWS, Fort Worth, TX; and R. M. Mosier, D. E. Cavanaugh, and T. M. Ryan
Manuscript (463.7 kB)

Handout (267.9 kB)

Thermodynamic and kinematic parameters associated with 1,974 tornadoes rated EF-1 to EF-5, on the Enhanced Fujita scale were retrieved from the North American Regional Reanalysis dataset. These data were divided into bins discriminating violent (here, EF-4 & EF-5) and non-violent (EF-1, EF-2, & EF-3) tornadoes. The focus of this investigation was to document the variability of low-level thermodynamic and kinematic parameters associated with environments in which these tornadoes occurred. A study of these parameters for the tornado dataset is presented and discussed. This comparison shows that low-level thermodynamic characteristics may discriminate the environments in which violent tornadoes occur.
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