27th Conference on Hurricanes and Tropical Meteorology


Overview of the Field Phase of the NASA Tropical Cloud Systems and Processes (TCSP) Experiment

Robbie E. Hood, NASA/MSFC, Huntsville, AL; and E. Zipser, G. M. Heymsfield, R. Kakar, J. Halverson, R. Rogers, and M. Black

The Tropical Cloud Systems and Processes experiment is sponsored by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to investigate characteristics of tropical cyclone genesis, rapid intensification and rainfall using a three-pronged approach that emphasizes satellite information, suborbital observations and numerical model simulations. Research goals include demonstration and assessment of new technology, improvements to numerical model parameterizations, and advancements in data assimilation techniques.

The field phase of the experiment was based in Costa Rica during July 2005. A fully instrumented NASA ER-2 high altitude airplane was deployed with Doppler radar, passive microwave instrumentation, lightning and electric field sensors and an airborne simulator of visible and infrared satellite sensors. Other assets brought to TCSP were a low flying uninhabited aerial vehicle, and a surface-based radiosonde network. In partnership with the Intensity Forecasting Experiment of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Hurricane Research Division, two NOAA P-3 aircraft instrumented with radar, passive microwave, microphysical, and dropsonde instrumentation were also deployed to Costa Rica.

The field phase of TCSP was conducted in Costa Rica to take advantage of the geographically compact tropical cyclone genesis region of the Eastern Pacific Ocean near Central America. However, the unusual 2005 hurricane season provided numerous opportunities to sample tropical cyclone development and intensification in the Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico as well. Development of Hurricane Dennis and Tropical Storm Gert were each investigated over several days in addition to Hurricane Emily as it was close to Saffir-Simpson Category 5 intensity. An overview of the characteristics of these storms along with the pre-genesis environment of Tropical Storm Eugene in the Eastern Pacific will be presented.

extended abstract  Extended Abstract (440K)

wrf recording  Recorded presentation

Session 1A, Special Session: Results from the NASA TCSP Experiment
Monday, 24 April 2006, 8:00 AM-10:00 AM, Big Sur

Next paper

Browse or search entire meeting

AMS Home Page