Published in Monthly Weather Review – Taking a Hurricane’s Pulse: Could it lead to a better understanding of storm structure and intensity change?

This work describes a new technique that uses infrared satellite imagery to examine the evolution of the tropical cyclone daily cycle for all Atlantic major hurricanes from 2001-2010.  The imagery reveals cyclical pulses in the cloud field that regularly move outward from the hurricane each day.  These pulses begin near the hurricane’s center at about sunset each day and move outward several hundred kilometers by the following afternoon.  There can be significant changes in hurricane structure as these daily pulses evolve, and they may impact intensity estimates and the size of the hurricane wind field. The repetition of this cycle and in time and space suggests that it may be a fundamental hurricane process.

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The full paper can be accessed at