Friday, April 13, 2012

Satellites Help Study of 2011 Tornadoes

April is the Cruelest Month




April 13, 2012: In the opening lines to The Waste Land, T.S. Eliot wrote "April is the Cruelest Month."

You might agree if you live in the southeastern United States. Last April, a historic outburst of 202 tornadoes turned broad swaths of that part of the country into a disaster zone.

"The event of April 27th and 28th 2011 was the costliest convective storm in U.S. history," said Kevin Knupp, professor of atmospheric sciences at the University of Alabama-Huntsville. And he doesn't just mean costly in terms of property damage -- 316 people lost their lives.

Of the 202 twisters that day, 62 tore through Alabama, where Knupp works. Ten of them were ranked EF 4 and 5 on the Enhanced Fujita Scale.  Three tornadoes churned paths more than 120 miles long, and a large number of the twisters cut swaths more than a half mile wide.

Knupp saw the results first-hand, and he’s been studying them ever since. Aided by a team of graduate students and colleagues, he’s sifted through gigabytes of data1 collected by NASA and NOAA satellites and local ground sensors.   A year later, they have drawn some interesting conclusions.
April is the Cruelest Month (splash, 558px)
A new ScienceCast video recaps the events of April 27-28, 2011, and explores what researchers have learned from the outbreak. Play it

MORE: http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2012/13apr_april/

gaw

Glenn A. Walsh, Project Director,
Friends of the Zeiss < http://friendsofthezeiss.org >
Electronic Mail - < gawalsh@planetarium.cc >
SPACE & SCIENCE NEWS, ASTRONOMICAL CALENDAR:
  < http://buhlplanetarium.tripod.com/#news >
SPACEWATCHTOWER BLOG: < http://spacewatchtower.blogspot.com >
Twitter: < http://twitter.com/spacewatchtower >
Facebook: < http://www.facebook.com/pages/SpaceWatchtower/238017839577841?sk=wall >
Author of History Web Sites on the Internet --
* Buhl Planetarium, Pittsburgh:
  < http://www.planetarium.cc >
* Adler Planetarium, Chicago:
  < http://adlerplanetarium.tripod.com >
* Astronomer, Educator, Optician John A. Brashear:
  < http://johnbrashear.tripod.com >
* Andrew Carnegie & Carnegie Libraries:
  < http://www.andrewcarnegie.cc >
* Civil War Museum of Andrew Carnegie Free Library:
  < http://garespypost.tripod.com >
* Duquesne Incline cable-car railway, Pittsburgh:
  < http://inclinedplane.tripod.com >
* Public Transit:
  < http://andrewcarnegie2.tripod.com/transit >

No comments:

Post a Comment