Paper on the relative roles of the ocean and atmosphere in maintaining hurricanes published in Monthly Weather Review

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Until now, it was believed that hurricanes are maintained by the ocean alone.  Observations from 62 hurricanes during 32 years support a different, nuanced conclusion.  Besides the ocean, near-surface air temperature and moisture play a large, often dominant, role in maintaining a hurricane.

Important conclusions:

1.  The long-held belief that an ocean surface temperature of at least 26 degrees C (80 degrees F) is required to maintain a hurricane was not supported in 6% of the cases studied.  Atmospheric moisture conditions in areas of high wind speeds are what cause the “80-degree F threshold” for hurricanes.

2.  For hurricanes within 29 degrees of the equator, the atmosphere, not the ocean, was found to be the most important factor in maintaining the hurricane.

The full paper can be accessed at

2015 Hurricane Field Program/Intensity Forecast EXperiment (HFP/IFEX) Planning Meeting

On Tuesday, May 19, 2015, Dr. Robert Rogers led a kick off meeting to discuss our flight experiments and modules that will be part of the 2015 hurricane field campaign. Click here to review the proposed experiments.

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HRD researchers at 69th Interdepartmental Hurricane Conference/Tropical Cyclone Research Forum, Jacksonville, FL – 2-6 March 2014

HRD and AOML scientists participated in the 69th Interdepartmental Hurricane Conference/Tropical Cyclone Research Forum. HRD scientists presented or were coauthors on 5 of the 51 presentations and 2 of the 10 posters. Shirley Murillo and Eric Uhlhorn co-chaired two sessions and Frank Marks participated in a panel discussion on the “Tropical Cyclone Research Plan Mid-Course Assessment – Operational Needs and Research Priorities”.
  1. NOAA’s Intensity Forecast Experiment (IFEX): Progress and Plans for 2015. – Robert Rogers (NOAA/AOML/HRD)
  2. Improved SFMR Surface Winds and Rain Rates. – Eric W. Uhlhorn (NOAA/AOML/HRD) and Bradley W. Klotz (UM/RSMAS/CIMAS and HRD)
  3. The Basin-Scale HWRF System: Verification and Analysis. – Sundararaman G. Gopalakrishnan (NOAA/AOML/HRD), Gus Alaka and Xuejin Zhang (UM/CIMAS and NOAA/AOML), Thiago Quirino (NOAA/AOML/HRD), Vijay Tallapragada (NOAA/NCEP/EMC), and Frank Marks Jr. (NOAA/AOML/HRD)
  4. NOAA’s Use of the Coyote UAS in Hurricane Edouard to Enhance Basic Understanding and Improve Model Physics. – Joseph J. Cione (NOAA/AOML/HRD at the Earth System Research Laboratory), Kristie Twining NOAA/OAMO), Drew Osbrink and Eric Redweik (Sensintel Corporation), Jim Etro and Dave Downer (ItriCorp), Evan Kalina (University of Colorado), Ligia Bernardet (NOAA/DTC), and Tony Brescia (Naval Air Systems Command)
  5. Identifying and Understanding Ocean Model Impacts on Coupled HWRF Forecasts. – Hyun-Sook Kim (NOAA/NCEP/EMC) and George Halliwell (NOAA/AOML)


  1. Upper Ocean Observations in Hurricane Edouard. – Eric W. Uhlhorn (NOAA/AOML/HRD), Benjamin Jaimes (UM/RSMAS), Joseph J. Cione (NOAA/ AOML/HRD) and Lynn K. (Nick) Shay (UM/RSMAS)
  2. Impact of CYGNSS Data on Hurricane Analyses and Forecasts in a Regional OSSE Framework. – Brian McNoldy (University of Miami/RSMAS), Bachir Annane (UM/RSMAS/CIMAS and HRD), Javier Delgado (UM/RSMAS/CIMAS and HRD), Lisa Bucci (UM/RSMAS/CIMAS and HRD), Robert Atlas (NOAA/AOML), and Sharanya Majumdar (University of Miami/RSMAS)

Panel discussion on the “Tropical Cyclone Research Plan Mid-Course Assessment – Operational Needs and Research Priorities”

Dr. Frank Marks, Jr., WG/TCR Co-Chair and Director, Hurricane Research Division (NOAA/AOML)

The agenda and links to all presentations are online at

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HRD Monthly Science Meeting of December 2014

December’s Science meeting had 2 presentations:

  1. Paul Reasor:  The Radar Re-analysis Project: Overview and Status
  2. Joe Cione: The relative roles of the ocean and atmosphere as revealed by buoy air-sea observations in hurricanes

The presentations are available on the anonymous ftp site at:

HRD scientists participate in HFIP RI Workshop and Annual Review, University of Miami/RSMAS – 18-20 November 2014

The HFIP Workshop on Prediction of Tropical Cyclone Rapid Intensity Change (RIC) and Annual Review Meeting were held at the University of Miami Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science (RSMAS), Miami, FL from 18-20 November, 2014. The agenda, presentations, and background information are available at

The goals of the Workshop on Prediction of Tropical Cyclone Rapid Intensity Change (RIC) were to:

  1. Assess current capabilities for numerical and statistical prediction of RIC, including emphasis on rapid intensification
  2. Identify short-term (0-1 year) and long-term (1-3 year) potential improvements of RIC prediction

HRD scientists Rob Rogers, John Kaplan, Sundararaman Gopalakrishnan, and Jun Zhang provided invited talks.

The HFIP Annual Workshop consisted of three parts:

  1. Reports from each of the strategic and tiger teams on activities and results from 2014 and plans for 2015
  2. A couple of reports on activities relevant to the later discussions
  3. A discussion of priorities for a reduced project

Joe Cione participates in 3rd WMO/IOC Data Buoy Cooperation Panel Workshop for North Pacific Ocean and Its Marginal Seas, Kyoto, Japan – 6-8 October 2014

The 3rd North Pacific Ocean and Marginal Seas (NPOMS-3) workshop was convened by WMO/IOC Data Buoy Cooperation Panel (DBCP) to discuss the “Application of Regional Ocean Observations for Increasing Society’s Understanding and Forecasting of Typhoons“, 6-8 October 2014 at Japan’s Disaster Prevention Research Institute (DPRI) in Kyoto. University of Kyoto Graduate School in Advanced Integrated Studies (GSAIS) was the Co-Host with DPRI. NPOMS-3 Co-Sponsors are the DBCP and NOAA’s Office of Climate Observation (OCO) with Workshop Venue on Uji Campus of University of Kyoto. The workshop goals reflect the needs of  long-term Ocean-Climate Monitoring Capacity for Regional Cyclogenesis and Forecasting:

  1. Review recent, on-going and planned regional programs on typhoon and its interaction with the ocean,
  2. Discuss new advances in our understanding of the processes and mechanisms of typhoon-ocean interaction,
  3. Explore the possibility of regional collaboration to improve typhoon observation and prediction,
  4. Demonstrate the crucial role of Western Pacific (WESTPAC) ocean observations, such as for understanding and predicting regional cyclogenesis,
  5. Build Regional and National Human, Institutional and Infrastructure Capacity Needed to Acquire, Process and Deliver Socio-Economic Benefits From Ocean Observations,
  6. Continue to Learn Practical Implementation Skills for the Deployment of Operational Data Buoys at Sea, the Collection of Buoy Data, and Related Data Management,
  7. Continue to Align with Objectives of the Global Framework for Climate Services (GFCS) to Deliver Ocean Data to the End-User,
  8. Enhance Coordination and Cooperation between the DBCP Task Team for Capacity Building (TT-CB), WMO Regional Associations (RA-II/V) and the IOC Regional Office for WESTPAC.

The presentations, agenda and list of participants are available here.  Dr. Cione made one presentation:

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HRD Debrief for missions into Hurricane Edouard – 1 October 2014

HRD researchers discussed the results from the 8 P-3, 1 G-IV, and 3 Global-Hawk missions into Hurricane Edouard. The agenda for the discussion was:
  1. Brief overview of all missions (Joe Cione)
  2. Overview of Doppler radar composites (Sim Aberson)
  3. Pre-storm ocean and ocean winds (Eric Uhlhorn)
  4. Model evaluation experiment – 20140915H1 (Jason Dunion)
  5. Model evaluation experiment – 20140915I1 (Eric Uhlhorn)
  6. HS3/NOAA Global Hawk operations – 20140914-15 (Rob Rogers)
  7. Model evaluation experiment – 20140915N1 (Altug Aksoy)
  8. Model evaluation experiment – 20140916H1 (Jason Dunion)
  9. Coyote USA – 20140916H1 (Joe Cione)
  10. Ocean winds – 20140916I1 (Sim Aberson/Paul Chang)
  11. Model evaluation experiment – 20140917H1 (Evan Kalina)
  12. Coyote USA – 20140917H1 (Joe Cione)
  13. HS3/NOAA Global Hawk operations – 20140916-17 (Rob Rogers)
  14. Post-storm ocean and glider comparison 20140919I1 (Eric Uhlhorn)
  15. Caribbean Survey Ocean Glider/North Brazil Current Ring Experiment 20140919I1 (Johna Rudzin, RSMAS)
  16. Media (Erica Rule)
  17. Open discussion (all)

Slides from the debrief are available at:

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