Real-time Analysis of Hurricane Sandy's Wind Field

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Wednesday, 5 February 2014
Hall C3 (The Georgia World Congress Center )
Mark Powell, NOAA/AOML, Tallahassee, FL; and S. Murillo and B. Annane

Hurricane Sandy's huge wind field contributed to values of integrated kinetic energy in excess of 300 TJ, rendering a 5.8 on the Powell-Reinhold Surge-Wave Destructive Potential scale despite an intensity not worthy of classification as a major hurricane via the Saffir-Simpson scale. Detailed analyses of Sandy's wind field were constructed every 3 h during the warning period based on NOAA's H*Wind Hurricane Wind Analysis System. Data gaps radially outward from the region of reconnaissance aircraft coverage can limit the assessment of the extent of tropical storm force winds and represent a challenge for analysis of hurricane wind fields. Satellite scatterometer measurements from ASCAT and Ocean Scat, together with GOES cloud drift winds helped to fill these data voids during Hurricane Sandy. Results indicate a hybrid structure with a persistant wind maximum associated with the tropical warm core, as well as an outer maximum related to the extratropical transition process. GIS shape files and census tract wind maxima were transmitted to DHS for use in estimating impacts with FEMA's HAZUS model.