75th Anniversary of first ‘real time’ hurricane fix from an aircraft

On August 16, 1943 information from an Army Air Force flight into a tropical storm east of Miami was relayed in ‘real time’ to the Joint Miami Hurricane Warning Center and the information was used to update their analyses. This was the first time a center position of a tropical cyclone was 'fixed' by aircraft …

60th Anniversary of first “real time” computer hurricane forecast

On August 13, 1958, a team of University of Chicago scientists ran a computer forecast model on Tropical Storm Becky as the storm was on-going.  Although not used for the official subjective forecast, the computer runs were a "proof of concept" demonstrating that Numerical Weather Prediction was possible for tropical cyclones. The team, consisting of …

70th Anniversary of seminal hurricane formation paper

In the summer 1948 edition of Geophysica journal, Eric Palmén published a seminal paper entitled "On the Formation and Structure of Tropical Hurricanes".  In it he proposed that a tropical disturbance needed to be over sea surface temperature of at least 80℉ (26-27℃) in order to form into a tropical cyclone.  He imposed the tracks …

Seventy-fifth Anniversary of first hurricane eye penetration

On July 27, 1943, U.S. Army Air Forces Lt. Col. Joseph B. Duckworth made the first deliberate flight into the eye of a hurricane.  This historic event inaugurated the era of aircraft reconnaissance into tropical cyclones which greatly enhanced our understanding and forecasting of these storms. Duckworth was an Eastern Air Lines pilot prior to World War …

HRD becomes a recipient of the NOAA Preserve America Initiative Internal Funding Program (PAIIF)

The NOAA Preserve America Initiative Internal Funding Program (PAIIF) recently announced the recipients of the 2018 funding initiative.   The chosen projects demonstrate the concept of using heritage to communicate NOAA’s messages and contemporary issues that are of relevance to the American public today.  The projects represent current issues facing the nation and NOAA:  sustainable …

Tenth Anniversary of Very Severe Tropical Cyclone Nargis

  On May 2, 2008 Very Severe Cyclone Nargis made landfall in Burma (Myanmar).  The cyclone struck the delta of the Irrawaddy River  with JTWC-estimated winds of 135 mph (117 kt, 60 m/s), sending a storm surge some 40 km inland and causing nearly 140,000 deaths.  By some calculations this makes Nargis the seventh deadliest cyclone in the North Indian …

15th anniversary of publication of seminal work on wind profiles in the tropical cyclone eyewall from dropwindsondes

Starting in 1996, NOAA phased out use of the obsolete Omega DropWindsondes (ODW) in favor of the Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) Dropwindsondes.  In addition to being more accurate due to the superior navigation system, this next-generation sonde was also more moisture tolerant.  ODWs would fail in they were launched in areas of heavy rain, but …

2018 Hurricane-Related Anniversaries

In 2018 we will observe the following tropical cyclone-related anniversaries. 2013 5th anniversary Despite preseason forecasts for an active hurricane season this year sees the fewest Atlantic hurricanes since 1982 and the first season since 1968 with no Category 2 hurricanes of higher. Hurricane Manuel strikes the Pacific coast of Mexico, causing 123 deaths and …

HRD celebrates Howie Friedman’s 57 years of federal service

  HRD and friends celebrated Howie Friedman's 57-year federal career February 13.  Howie served as the long-time deputy director of HRD.  He started his meteorology career studying at New York University, where he received his B.A. from the University College of Arts and Sciences in 1960 and his M.S. from the Graduate School of Engineering …