83rd Annual

Monday, 10 February 2003
The Synoptic Environment of the 11 April 2001 Central Plains Tornado Outbreak Viewed in Three Dimensions
Daniel D. Nietfeld, NOAA/NWSFO, Valley, NE
Poster PDF (391.1 kB)
During the late morning and afternoon of 11 April 2001, a significant tornado outbreak took place in the central plains. There were approximately 40 tornadoes reported with this event, and most of the tornadoes were associated with mini-supercell thunderstorms. A large and mature extra-tropical cyclone dominated the synoptic scale environment. This paper will review some of the key elements of the synoptic environment through a three-dimensional perspective, utilizing the Display 3 Dimension (D3D) software from the NOAA Forecast System Lab (FSL). Many of the features, including a potential vorticity anomaly, the jet stream structure, and moisture fields, were considerably easier to visualize in a three-dimensional framework. Demonstration of applications of three-dimensional visualization in an operational setting is the primary goal of this paper.

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