6 Should We Undertake a Global Reanalysis of Tropical Cyclones?

Tuesday, 17 April 2018
Champions DEFGH (Sawgrass Marriott)
Kerry A. Emanuel, MIT, Cambridge, MA; and P. Caroff, S. Delgado, C. Guard, M. P. Guishard, C. C. Hennon, J. Knaff, K. Knapp, J. Kossin, C. J. Schreck III, C. Velden, and J. L. Vigh

Historical observations of tropical cyclones have proven to be of great value to scientific research, to forecasting, and to many industries, such as insurance and re-insurance. But in almost all cases, the observations were made in support of immediate forecasting needs and were not quality controlled with an eye toward the uniformity and consistency that we demand of climatological data sets. Yet the increasing use of such data for risk assessment and in the detection of trends and variability warrants both a careful reanalysis of existing data and the application of uniform standards to future observations. we convened a workshop in Asheville, NC, on May 22-23 2017, to explore the feasibility of performing a global reanalysis of tropical cyclones and to lay the foundations for a set of standards for future observations. Our aims are to:
  • Produce best estimates of the characteristics of each tropical cyclone globally beginning around 1980, applying contemporary methods of analyzing satellite imagery as well as aircraft, ship, and other surface-based data where available to produce a high-quality product based on homogeneous analysis standards.
  • Augment the record of each storm with quantitatively estimated error bars for key quantities such as maximum winds, minimum surface pressure, and radius of maximum winds.
  • Produce a high quality archive of all the metadata used in the analysis of each storm. Such an archive would be freely accessible for tropical cyclone research and risk modeling.

We will describe the outcomes of the workshop and future steps toward a global TC reanalysis.

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