NSSL’s Rotation Tracks image of the tornado outbreak gets some appreciation!

Dr. L with rotation tracks image
NWSFO Birmingham, AL staff and NOAA's Dr. Lubchenco, and U.S. Congressman Spence Baukus gather around NSSL's rotation tracks image that was used to plan damage surveys.

NSSL has released this image documenting the rotation tracks of the devastating tornadoes on April 27-28. Bright reds and yellows show more intense circulations.

A closer view of the image can be found here:  http://www.nssl.noaa.gov/briefings/2011/04/nssl-product-captures-rotation-tracks-of-april-27-tornado-outbreak/

The image was produced by the On Demand Severe Weather Verification System, part of NSSL’s Warning Decision Support System – Integrated Information (WDSS-II) Multi-Radar/Multi Sensor platform.  On Demand is a web-based tool that can be used to help confirm when and where severe weather occurred.

The platform is being used by several local American Red Cross chapters, emergency managers and National Weather Service Forecast Offices for disaster assessment and response.

The WDSS-II system receives data in real-time from the nationwide networks of weather radars, satellites, surface observations and lightning detectors. WDSS-II then processes, analyzes and displays the data in a way that is useful to people who need to diagnose severe weather quickly.

On Demand uses data gathered and sorted by WDSS-II to estimate the tracks of rotating storms and where hail fell.  The rotation tracks or hail swath data can be overlaid on high-resolution street maps in Google Earth/Maps to pinpoint areas affected by the hazardous weather.

To download the file to overlay on Google Earth, go to:  http://ondemand.nssl.noaa.gov/RotationTrack1440min_20110428-085936.kmz