87th AMS Annual Meeting

Tuesday, 16 January 2007: 1:45 PM
IDV Perspective: Climatology of the 2005 Hurricane Season
206B (Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center)
Shelley O. Holmberg, Univ. of North Carolina, Charlotte, NC; and B. Etherton and J. Weber
Poster PDF (98.2 kB)
Instead of just looking at data sets, what if students could interact with them? Three such interactive, educational modules are being built using the Integrated Data Viewer (IDV): (1) the “2005 Atlantic Tropical Cyclone Season” module - the most active in history; (2) “Hurricane Katrina” module - the costliest storm in US History; and (3) “Hurricane Wilma” module - the most intense Hurricane in Atlantic history. Each module offers a unique perspective into the broad spectrum of unprecedented features of the season. Through IDV, the “2005 Atlantic Tropical Cyclone Season” module illustrates which climatological processes were present to force the unusually active season. The “Hurricane Katrina” module will show what factors contributed to the vast magnitude of societal impacts and resultant catastrophe on the Gulf Coast. The final module of “Hurricane Wilma” utilizes the predominant and relevant meteorological and oceanographic features to illustrate the formation of the most intense hurricane on record. IDV is a unique program that allows students to gain a three-dimensional perspective of the atmosphere, and thus atmospheric processes, with the ability to probe the data and take cross sections. Data access via THREDDS (Thematic Realtime Environmental Distributed Data Services) catalogs, OPeNDAP (Open-source Project for a Network Data Access Protocol) and ADDE (Application Development for the Distributed Enterprise) servers provide data in IDV supported formats, to allow for a variety of disparate data sets to be incorporated into one view using the IDV client. The students are able to use this interchangeable variety of data set overlays to illustrate atmospheric processes of interest. The use of multi-media COMET (Co-operative Program for Operational Meteorology, Education, and Training) modules enhances the educational aspect of these case studies and make for a richer learning experience. These module capabilities enable educators to reach a wide range of students with the “2005 Atlantic Tropical Cyclone Season”, “Hurricane Katrina,” and “Hurricane Wilma.”

The “2005 Atlantic Tropical Cyclone Season” module offers a climatic perspective on the extremely active season by using IDV overlays of certain climatological parameters and synoptic features. With this module, the student has an opportunity to explore, and determine, the amount of forcing exerted by the anomalous environment on the frequency and severity of Atlantic tropical cyclones in 2005. When used as an educational tool, the “2005 Atlantic Tropical Cyclone Season” module will lead to a better understanding of the climate forcing mechanisms present in that unprecedented season, especially the Atlantic Multi-Decadal Oscillation. The student can then apply the knowledge gained while navigating this module to current tropical systems. The “2005 Atlantic Tropical Cyclone Season” module enables the student to better understand and recognize climate patterns (similar to those present in 2005), and their implications in tropical cyclogenesis and maintenance.

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