NOAA/National Severe Storms Laboratory

Lessons from subVORTEX RFD (summer 98) relative to TIMEx:

  • the relevant physical scales of organization of convective initiation may be even smaller than expected, on the order of 10ís of meters; see Erik Rasmussenís web site for examples: http://mrd3.mmm.ucar.edu/~eras/www/MyPage/DCVZ/dcvz.html
  • given the potential importance of relatively small physical scales of organization of water vapor, it became clear that an aircraft-mounted scanning system (moving at 100 ms-1) would not be able to resolve such small scales; accordingly, our focus shifted away from the development of airborne scanning DIAL, to a ground-based system;
  • fast moving boundaries are extremely difficult to observe from the ground;
  • better communications are essential, both between teams and with data sources;
  • need to improve ability to coordinate multiple mobile platforms;
  • easy to find null cases of convective initiation, very difficult to find initiation;
  • expect to spend 12000 miles to document 6 boundaries;
  • no substitute for the human eye in detecting initiation (30 min. faster).