Vortex2 tornado study finally gets some twisters to study

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:56 PM GMT on June 08, 2009

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A proven way to reduce the incidence of dangerous weather phenomena is to schedule a multi-million dollar field experiment to study the phenomena. Up until this past weekend, that has certainly been true of this year's $10 million Vortex2 tornado study. The 7-week study (which also runs next year) has deployed an armada of over 100 storm chasing vehicles across the Great Plains this Spring, but has largely been frustrated by an exceptionally quiet tornado season. Tornado activity in May was less than half of what was observed last year in May, thanks to a ridge of high pressure that has dominated the weather. The residents of Tornado Alley ran out of luck over the weekend, though, as a strong low pressure system and associated cold front brought severe weather and multiple tornadoes to the region. Sixteen tornado reports were received by NOAA's Storm Prediction Center yesterday, and three on Friday. The team of University of Michigan students that has been writing our featured Vortex2 blog caught some excellent pictures of tornadoes on both Friday and Sunday. Yesterday was probably the last best chance for the Vortex2 project to document a strong tornado, since the project ends this Saturday and no significant tornado outbreaks appear likely for the remainder of this week.

Aurora, Colorado tornado yesterday
A tornado with a 3/4 mile wide debris cloud swept through Aurora, Colorado yesterday, staying on the ground for 8 - 11 miles and damaging a shopping mall, but causing no deaths or injuries. The tornado passed close to one of the high-resolution Terminal Doppler Weather Radars (TDWRs) that we now feature on our web site (see the radar FAQ for more details on these great new additions to our radar offerings). Posted below are the reflectivity and Doppler velocity images from the tornado, showing the amazing fine-scale details these high-resolution radars offer.



Figure 1. Radar reflectivity (top) and Doppler velocity (bottom) from the Denver, Colorado Terminal Doppler Weather Radar (TDWR), which caught the classic signature of a supercell thunderstorm tornado over Aurora, Colorado. A tornado dropped down from the low-level mesocyclone inside the parent supercell thunderstorm at the time of these images. Yellow colors located right next to greens/blues indicate that winds are moving towards and away from the radar in close proximity, the signature of strong rotation at low levels. Also visible on the plot are the winds spreading out from a downdraft on the rear side of the tornado. Black arrows denote the direction of wind flow. The dryline was bent back into a E-W orientation near Denver, creating an area of moisture convergence, which triggered thunderstorm formation.

Western Caribbean disturbance unlikely to develop this week
As area of disturbed weather over the Western Caribbean has brought rains of 2 - 3 inches over portions of Nicaragua and Honduras over the past few days. Wind shear is a high 20 - 30 knots over the disturbance, and no computer models are indicating that the disturbance will develop this week.

Jeff Masters, with help from wunderground's tornado expert, Dr. Rob Carver

Dying out after an official 24 minutes on the ground
Tornado (Fungus)
Tornado
Twisted (rrose1)
This was taken approximately 30 minutes after a brief tornado passed through South Hutchinson, KS tonight. The building is a bus manufacturing facility.
Twisted

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TampaSpins Tropical Update
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Quoting hurricanemaniac123:
Canesrule1 went from one hour ago saying that this would become TS Ana to saying it has no chance and it is RIP.

Typical hurricane season bloggers.
how about you be quiet, an hour ago it was not affected by shear as bad as now and the convection was there, now its being affected by shear quite badly and and convection is diminishing, THINK ABOUT THAT FOR A SEC!!!
Hey Guys,
I'm glad to be back for HS 2009.
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Quoting TampaSpin:


Can you please explain in datail analysis exactly what your position is and what you mean by the above statement......ROFLMAO


You may not want to tell us your position..LMAO
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is burberry cool??
Canesrule1 went from one hour ago saying that this would become TS Ana to saying it has no chance and it is RIP.

Typical hurricane season bloggers.
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Quoting NEwxguy:
Its only June 8th,it'll only get worse,and I'm not talking about tropical developement


Can you please explain in datail analysis exactly what your position is and what you mean by the above statement......ROFLMAO
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Never watch a blow up for hours on end and frame by frame because in one hour it may look really ominous and then the next it seems to be dissipating. The atmosphere is a dynamic and fluid environment often full of surprises.





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no chance.
Its only June 8th,it'll only get worse,and I'm not talking about tropical developement
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look at the shear!!!
Quoting Floodman:
Good morning, folks, by the way...


Hey Floodman....Great to see ya.....welcome to the jungle....

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sorry bout double posts
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Quoting SavannahStorm:
Some nice emoticons for Season 09'











LOL love those!
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Quoting SavannahStorm:
Some nice emoticons for Season 09'







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Quoting canesrule1:
yea, because i am looking at the satellite now, and please dont tell me that, i dont care what i said 30 minutes ago! not trying to be mean.
Some nice emoticons for Season 09'







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Quoting IKE:


We know how you feel.

Good luck:)
thanks
Quoting CybrTeddy:


quite a change in tone from 30 minutes ago.
yea, because i am looking at the satellite now, and please dont tell me that, i dont care what i said 30 minutes ago!
And now, back to "As the Blog Turns"....
Member Since: August 8, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 8826
not trying to be a troll or anything negative, i am just stating what i believe and what i believe is that this AOI is done for.
62. IKE
Quoting canesrule1:
believe me convection is diminishing, shear is up, no LLC, winds are not higher than 20 mph, if its not an invest its nothing!


We know how you feel.

Good luck:)
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
Flood,
Nope don't want to be that close,LOL.
Have listened to peoples accounts and they run from terrified to awestruck,to don't ever want to experience that again.
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Quoting canesrule1:
believe me convection is diminishing, shear is up, no LLC, winds are not higher than 20 mph, if its not an invest its nothing!


quite a change in tone from 30 minutes ago.
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Quoting DestinJeff:
"this forecaster's analysis of satellite imagery, current data, computer model output, Dr Master's post, my magic eight ball, front yard ant activity, dragon fly swarm volume, climatology, and baroclinic process dynamics of the ENSO's MJO around the TUTT axis east of 90W, I can say the Caribbean blob has a 23% chance of having a 10% chance of developing"


I concur.
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Quoting IKE:


You're going to be in for a long year on here, RIP-ing things....
believe me convection is diminishing, shear is up, no LLC, winds are not higher than 20 mph, if its not an invest its nothing!
extreme (weatherstudent) dont be upset!
Member Since: January 22, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 1606
Great, Eddye is wishcasting it, canesrule is downcasting it.

Welcome back to Hurricane season folks.
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Quoting K8eCane:
I try not to listen to the RIPs ( a knowledgable person tends not to do that) nor do i listen to the hype


i have the capability to view the satellites and form my own opinions
me too RIP btw, lol
52. IKE
Quoting hurricanealley:
RIP


And so are you...just preparing ya'll.
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
watch out it developing pretty good watch out fl a caTGORY 3 coming
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"IT IS SET IN STONE"
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49. IKE
Quoting canesrule1:
RIP


You're going to be in for a long year on here, RIP-ing things....
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
starting to look like turd!
I try not to listen to the RIPs ( a knowledgable person tends not to do that) nor do i listen to the hype


i have the capability to view the satellites and form my own opinions
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RIP
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RIP
Alright, have fun RIPing systems...
This most likely wont develop and I've said that, but still I've learned to NEVER, EVER write off a system.
I've lost count of how many times we've made that mistake. Lets see.. Pre-Felix, Pre-Fay, Pre-Dolly, Pre-Kyle, Pre-Gustav, Pre-Hanna, Pre-Ike, Pre-Dean, Pre-Gabrielle, Pre-Karen, Pre-Ingrid, Pre-TD-1, I can go on if you wish. You would think we would have learned by now wouldn't you? I've been on this blog since '05, and I assure you my fellow old timers will agree with me on this.

Wind shear is high and there is Dry air to the NW, development in the short time is unlikely unless the TUTT lifts out, but that doesn't mean its dead just because the convection dies out after it being -80C. You've got to remember this isn't a full blown Hurricane, weak disturbances like the Caribbean one have a tendency to loose convection in Durinal cycles simply because they can't hold it. PLUS it has no real LLC, mid-Levels yes, but hardly anything if at all down on the surface.
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nothing much happening in kingston
Member Since: May 16, 2009 Posts: 1 Comments: 1231
Good morning, folks, by the way...
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Quoting scottsvb:


Ok this hypecaster is on ignored! :)


lol if ignoring everyone who disagrees with you is the way you run things then be our guest
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Quoting NEwxguy:
tornadoe videos and pics are amazing,my dream is to see a tornadoe close,not too close but just to get feeling of the power. I know there are a lot of people through the years who wish they hadn't experienced the power.


They're terrifying up close; I've seen quite a few from a mile or two away to a couple of hundred yards...if you can pick out the individual items in the debris cloud you're WAAAAY too close...LOL
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Everyone is entitled to post on Dr.Masters blog unless banned by Admin of course. There are some pretty knowledgable folks on here to be sure,but the best advice I can give is to always follow the NHC or NWS for immediate and threatening weather concerns in your area they are the experts.
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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