Brrrr! -135.8°F Measured at Earth's New Coldest Spot

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 4:23 PM GMT on December 10, 2013

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I’m in San Francisco this week for the annual meeting of the American Geophysical Union (AGU), the world’s largest climate science conference. Over five thousand of the world’s top climate scientists are here, giving a staggering 10,000 talks and poster presentations. It’s total information overload, and I will only be able to offer this week but a small sampling of the incredible amount of science being presented here.

What is the coldest place in the world? It is a high ridge above 13,000 feet in Antarctica on the East Antarctic Plateau where temperatures in several hollows can dip below minus 135.8 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 92.2 degrees Celsius) on a clear winter night, announced polar scientist Ted Scambos of the National Snow and Ice Data Center, at a Monday press conference at the AGU conference. The official world cold record of minus 128.6 F (minus 89.2 C), set in 1983 at the Russian Vostok Research Station in East Antarctica will remain intact, though, since official records have to be measured by ground-based instruments. How cold is -135.8°F? That’s so cold that it would hurt to breathe, said Dr. Scambos in an AP interview. That’s also well below the -109°F temperature that dry ice (frozen carbon dioxide) begins to sublimate into gaseous carbon dioxide. But don’t get your hopes up that we can use the newly-found record cold spot to take CO2 out of the air and solve global warming—you need a temperature of -220°F (-140°C) to freeze CO2 out the air into dry ice “snow” at the concentrations that CO2 exists at in our atmosphere (about 398 ppm.) Still, it is an intriguing concept to build giant refrigerators in Antarctica to do just that—something that has been proposed by Purdue climate scientist Ernest Agee, in a research paper titled, CO2 Snow Deposition in Antarctica to Curtail Anthropogenic Global Warming, published earlier this year in the Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology .


Figure 1. With remote-sensing satellites, scientists have found the coldest places on Earth, just off a ridge in the East Antarctic Plateau. The coldest of the cold temperatures dropped to minus 135.8 F (minus 93.2 C)--several degrees colder than the previous record. Image Credit: Ted Scambos, National Snow and Ice Data Center.


Video 1. The coldest place on earth. Data from NASA-USGS Landsat 8 satellite, and NASA's MODIS sensor on the Aqua satellite. Image Credit:  NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center


Figure 2. In this spectacular photo from Antarctica taken by a NASA scientist on November 24, 2013, we see a lenticular cloud over a pressure ridge in the Antarctic sea ice. Lenticular clouds are a type of wave cloud. They usually form when a layer of air near the surface encounters a topographic barrier, gets pushed upward, and flows over it as a series of atmospheric gravity waves. Lenticular clouds form at the crest of the waves, where the air is coolest and water vapor is most likely to condense into cloud droplets. The bulging sea ice in the foreground is a pressure ridge, which formed when separate ice floes collided and piled up on each other. Image credit: NASA Earth Observatory.

Follow this week’s talks at AGU via the Internet
You can watch live streaming and recorded talks at this week’s AGU meeting—nearly 100 sessions (almost 600 presentations in total)--will be available live and on demand. Register here, and be sure to use code AGU13 for free access. You can also browse thousands of poster presentations at the poster site.
 
Amusing story: Metallica Has Officially Rocked on Every Continent Following Antarctica Gig on Sunday

Jeff Masters

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Do I see cold air 7 days from now? Well 78 degrees would be a cool down for us.
It's also only rained twice in 7 weeks at my location in Fort Myers.
Fort Myers 7 day forecast
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Quoting 330. MahFL:


Why were you in jail ?


For post 207 (Removed)

It was quoted in 211 which is still up.
Member Since: July 25, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 670
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330. MahFL
Quoting 245. PensacolaDoug:
I'm back from WU jail.
Where's my Gulf Coast snow storm?


Why were you in jail ?
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329. MahFL
Quoting 320. Jedkins01:
Well at least the nasty, weird heat is gone here in Tallahassee, yesterday we had highs in the low 80's and humid, and it was still in the 70's at this time last night.

Today we had highs in the mid 60's and now its in the 40s, much better!


Same in Orange Park, 84F and this am 49F, much nicer.
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Good morning, afternoon and evening everyone. It's 32 with a wind chill of 31. They say we'll get to 50, but they say we'll warm
up every day lately and it gets about four degrees warmer and that's it, so I'll believe it when I feel it.

Breakfast's on the table: cheesy grits and shrimp, regular or whole wheat English muffins with poached egg whites, low fat cheese, ham, tomato and sauce, whole wheat pancakes with fruit sauce, egg burritos with cheese and chorizo, Belgian waffles with strawberries or powdered sugar, croissants, bagels with cream cheese and strawberry jelly or lox, cheese Danishes, yogurt, fresh fruit and orange, apple or pineapple juice. Regular and decaf coffee with flavored creamers to the side. Enjoy!
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327. DDR
Good morning
Another wet day here in Trinidad,itcz action :)
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US Air Force Band stages its 1st ever flash mob!
Way cool.
Link
Member Since: July 25, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 670
We get up too early Largo.
Member Since: July 25, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 670
I know what the constipated mathematician did.
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Good Morning.....................
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Quoting 320. Jedkins01:
Well at least the nasty, weird heat is gone here in Tallahassee, yesterday we had highs in the low 80's and humid, and it was still in the 70's at this time last night.

Today we had highs in the mid 60's and now its in the 40s, much better!


Yeah, I detest this unseasonable warmth and humidity as well. It figures that Florida has been the only place in the entire US that has been seeing above-normal temps over the past week when everyone else has been well below normal and some have logged record cold and record single day snowfalls.

Thankfully, the cold front which passed you during the overnight last night has now passed here and we can feel a distinct coolness enveloping the area. I believe the local TV mets have been somewhat underestimating the extent of this cool down, due mainly to their getting so used to the way above normal temps and the blocking high pressure system which brought them on. It looks like tomorrow will bring low 70s for highs in the Tampa Bay area instead of the "near 80" that is being predicted by the television meteorologists around here. Tomorrow night should be well below 60F over most of the area. Still not normal but much less bothersome than the "weird heat" you wrote about.
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Quoting 279. BaltimoreBrian:


What did the mathematician do when he was stranded on a deserted island?


Recite as many digits of pi as humanly possible, along with computing endless infinite series solutions by carving them in a tree with a stick.

Basically anything but taking measures of survival? lol
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Well at least the nasty, weird heat is gone here in Tallahassee, yesterday we had highs in the low 80's and humid, and it was still in the 70's at this time last night.

Today we had highs in the mid 60's and now its in the 40s, much better!
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319. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
India Meteorological Department
Tropical Cyclone Advisory #38
DEEP DEPRESSION, FORMER TC MADI (BOB08-2013)
8:30 AM IST December 11 2013
=======================================

At 3:00 AM UTC, the cyclonic storm MADI over west central Bay of Bengal moved southwestward, weakened into a deep depression and now lays center near 14.0N 83.8E, about 380 km southeast of Machillipatnam, 400 km east northeast of Chennai and 660 km north northeast of Trincomalee (Sri Lanka).

It would move further southwestwards and weaken into depression during next 12 hours.

According to satellite imagery, the Dvorak intensity of the system is T2.0. The associated convection depth and intensity have further decreased during past three hrs. Convection is being sheared from the low level circulation center. Associated broken low/medium clouds embedded with isolated moderate to intense convection is seen over the area between 12.5N to 18.5N and between 81.0E to 86.0E. The lowest cloud top temperature is about -50C

3 minute sustained winds near the center is 30 knots with gusts of 40 knots. The state of the sea is very rough around the center of the system. The central pressure of the deep depression is 997 hPa.

Forecast and Intensity
==========================
9 HRS 13.3N 83.0E - 25 knots (Depression)
21 HRS 12.3N 81.8E - Low Pressure Area
Member Since: May 24, 2006 Posts: 52 Comments: 47046












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Tropical Disturbance Summary For area Equator to 25S, 160E to 120W
ISSUED FROM RSMC NADI Dec 10/2230 UTC 2013 UTC.


TROPICAL DISTURBANCE 05F CENTRE [1003HPA] ANALYSED NEAR 22.5S 175.0E
AT 102100UTC. TD05F MOVING SSW AT 12 KNOTS. POSITION POOR BASED ON
MTSAT VIS IMAGERY AND PERIPHERAL SURFACE REPORTS. SST AROUND 26
DEGREES CELCIUS.

CONVECTION HAS NOT INCREASED OR DEEPENED MUCH IN THE LAST 12 HOURS.
ORGANISATION REMAINS POOR. SYSTEM LIES TO THE EAST OF AN UPPER TROUGH
IN A HIGH SHEARED ENVIRONMENT. CYCLONIC CIRCULATION EXTENDS UPTO
850HPA.

GLOBAL MODELS HAVE PICKED UP THE SYSTEM AND MOVE IT SOUTHEASTWARDS
WITHOUT MUCH INTENSIFICATION.

POTENTIAL FOR THIS SYSTEM TO DEVELOP INTO A TROPICAL CYCLONE IN THE
NEXT 24 TO 48 HOURS IS VERY LOW.

NO OTHER TROPICAL DISTURBANCE ANALYSED OR FORECAST IN THE AREA.

Link
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316. Skyepony (Mod)
Volcano Activity in Antarctica on Wednesday, 11 December, 2013 at 04:25 (04:25 AM) UTC.
Description
A big, hot blob hiding beneath the bottom of the world could be evidence of a long-sought mantle plume under West Antarctica, researchers say. The possible hotspot �" a plume of superheated rock rising from Earth's mantle �" sits under Marie Byrd Land, a broad dome at West Antarctica's edge where many active volcanoes above and below the ice spit lava and ash. The hot zone was discovered with seismic imaging techniques that rely on earthquake waves to build pictures of Earth's inner layers, similar to how a CT scan works. Beneath Marie Byrd Land, earthquake waves slow down, suggesting the mantle here is warmer than surrounding rocks. The strongest low-velocity zone sits below Marie Byrd Land's Executive Committee Range, directly under the Mount Sidley volcano, said Andrew Lloyd, a graduate student at Washington University in St. Louis. "The slow velocities suggest that it's a mantle hotspot," Lloyd said on Monday during the fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union. The hot zone also matches up with Marie Byrd Land's high topography and active volcanoes, Lloyd said. Many researchers have long suspected that Marie Byrd Land sits atop a hotspot, because the region swells above the surrounding topography like the top of a warm soufflé (and it has lots of volcanoes). But with few seismometers sitting on the ice, scientists were left speculating about what lies beneath Antarctica's ice.

The evidence for the new hot zone, called a thermal anomaly, comes from a massive, temporary earthquake-monitoring network called Polenet that was installed between 2010 and 2012, giving scientists an unprecedented look at Antarctica's crust and mantle. (A gravity survey conducted at the same time also suggests there is a big warm spot beneath this part of West Antarctica.) But confirming that Marie Byrd Land is truly above a hotspot may require a return trip to Antarctica for another seismic experiment, said Doug Wiens, principal investigator on Polenet. "What's absolutely sure is there's a big thermal anomaly, a big blob," said Wiens, a seismologist at Washington University. "What's less sure is whether that anomaly goes deeper." The thermal anomaly extends 125 miles (200 kilometers) below Marie Byrd Land, Lloyd said. Below about 255 miles (410 km), where a mantle plume's trailing tail would also leave a hotter-than-average mark in mantle rocks, there's little evidence for a rising hotspot, said Erica Emry, a postdoctoral researcher at Pennsylvania State University. "There's no smoking gun," Emry said. However, more work remains to be done on the Polenet data, which could reveal new clues and further refine what the mantle looks like under West Antarctica, Emry told LiveScience's OurAmazingPlanet.
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315. Skyepony (Mod)
Snow Storm in USA on Wednesday, 11 December, 2013 at 04:40 (04:40 AM) UTC.
Description
Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker on Tuesday declared state of emergency for Cherokee Nation, which includes all or part of 14 counties in northeastern Oklahoma. The declaration clears the way for the Cherokee Nation to disperse emergency funds for tribal citizens who may need help with food or water, utilities, shelter or emergency transportation following winter storms that dumped snow, ice and sleet across Oklahoma. It is also the first step toward seeking federal assistance, if necessary. "These are extremely harsh conditions we're facing, and it's our duty to protect and assist our citizens during this time of need," Baker said. "For many tribal elders in particular, we are their lifeline and perhaps their only means of support during the dangerous and potentially life-threatening emergency unfolding." Two teams of emergency crews were activated Saturday and Monday to help transport elderly citizens who were shut in by ice and snow to dialysis treatments. The teams transported Cherokee citizens from Adair, Cherokee and Delaware counties to the dialysis center in Tahlequah. A statewide state of emergency was declared Thursday for all 77 Oklahoma counties by Gov. Mary Fallin as the first of the storms began rolling in, bringing the wintry precipitation and frigid temperatures that are blamed for 11 confirmed deaths in Oklahoma as of Tuesday afternoon.
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314. Skyepony (Mod)
Event into space in China on Wednesday, 11 December, 2013 at 04:41 (04:41 AM) UTC.
Description
The fourth satellite launched by China and Brazil came crashing back to earth after failing to reach its orbit, according to Brazil's Ministry of Science. The satellite was part of a series launched in order to monitor land use in Brazil which includes keeping an eye on forests in the Amazon. The failed satellite was produced by China and Brazil and was carried to space on Monday morning by a Long March 4B rocket provided by China's Taiyuan satellite launch center, a statement from the Brazilian ministry said. "There was a failure in the launch vehicle during flight and the satellite was not positioned in the right orbit," the statement said, Reuters reported. "Preliminary evaluations suggest CBERS-3 has returned to Earth." The cause of the crash is currently being investigated. The failure to launch the satellite into orbit is not delaying China and Brazil, as both countries have agreed to speed up initial plans of launching the fifth satellite in the series, the CBERS-4. China and Brazil hope the series will lessen the dependence on the United States and Europe for space and launch equipment as both countries hope to expand their aerospace industries, Reuters reported. Brazil's space program is currently third on a list of producers of commercial jet aircrafts and hope to obtain their own launch capabilities soon. Plans are currently underway with Brazilian plane maker, Embraer SA, and the telecom company, Telebras, with a $560 million deal for a national defense and communications satellite to be placed in orbit by the year 2016. The satellite is being built by French aerospace supplier Thales and will be launched, when ready, by space-transport company Arianespace from the French Guiana, Reuters reported. Another reason for the satellites is so the Brazilian government can increase control over its unguarded border which runs throughout the South American continent
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You will never guess what the APOD is

APOD = Astronomy Picture of the Day
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312. Skyepony (Mod)
ex-30W
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Quoting 306. KalainH:


Holy crap! What grade are you in?


He is currently in the 4th grade.
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Quoting 306. KalainH:


Holy crap! What grade are you in?

11.

Quoting 309. Astrometeor:


This one if I remember correctly

Yeah.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32861
Quoting 299. Tornado6042008X:
What high school does Cody go to?


This one if I remember correctly
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My dog hates this weather, we always put him in the basement so he doesn't get too cold. He might be claustrophobic, because he doesn't stop barking at all once he is down there.



Edit: Removed the 'either'. I was going to add something else, but I decided against it after further consideration.
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Cast's line into the water



Any takers?
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Quoting 278. TropicalAnalystwx13:

Busy!

Trying to finish my 10 page paper for English before I start on my 8 page paper concerning the rule of Queen Elizabeth of England for Western Civ before I start my 3 page literary analysis on the social issues presented in The Great Gatsby for English while trying to complete 2 tests for my online Political Science class, study for my final test in Art Appreciation, and master logarithms for pre-calc.

Nothing out of the ordinary.


Holy crap! What grade are you in?
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Quoting 302. CybrTeddy:
What did the mathematician do when he was stranded on a deserted island?

I dunno but the engineer managed to sail away on a boat made up of tree bark and leafs.


Too bad he didn't have a meteorological knowledge and sailed into a typhoon.
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Quoting 302. CybrTeddy:
What did the mathematician do when he was stranded on a deserted island?

I dunno but the engineer managed to sail away on a boat made up of tree bark and leafs.


lol
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303. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
India Meteorological Department
Tropical Cyclone Advisory #37
CYCLONIC STORM MADI (BOB08-2013)
5:30 AM IST December 11 2013
=======================================

At 0:00 AM UTC, the cyclonic storm MADI over west central Bay of Bengal moved south southwestward and now lays center near 14.5N 84.4E, about 400 km east southeast of Machillipatnam, 480 km northeast of
Chennai and 740 km north northeast of Trincomalee (Sri Lanka).

It would move further south southwestwards and weaken into depression during next 12 hours.

According to satellite imagery, the Dvorak intensity of the system is T2.5. The associated convection depth and intensity have further decreased during past three hours. Convection is being sheared from the low level circulation center. Associated broken low/medium clouds embedded with moderate to intense convection is seen over the area between 14.0N to 20.0N and between 82.0E to 87.0E. The lowest cloud top temperature is about -50C.

3 minute sustained winds near the center is 40 knots with gusts of 50 knots. The state of the sea is high around the center of the system. The central pressure of the cyclonic storm is 996 hPa.

A buoy located near 14.8N 84.2E reported mean sea level pressure of 1001.5 hPa and surface winds of 23 knots.

The low level convergence along with low level relative vorticity and upper level divergence have further decreased during past six hours. The sea surface temperature is about 26-27C. The ocean thermal energy is less than 50 kj/cm2 around the system center. The vertical wind shear of horizontal wind is high (20-30 knots) around system center hence the system is experiencing colder water and high vertical wind shear. Total precipitable water imagery animation also indicates continuous entrainment of cold and dry air into the cyclone. It is helping in weakening of the. System all these conditions would weaken the system further into a depression during next 12 hours.

The cyclonic storm is moving south southwestwards with a speed of about 5 knots and would continue to do so during next 24 hours under the influence of lower and middle tropospheric steering winds.

Forecast and Intensity
======================
12 HRS 13.5N 83.6E - 25 knots (Depression)
24 HRS 12.5N 82.7E - Low Pressure Area
Member Since: May 24, 2006 Posts: 52 Comments: 47046
What did the mathematician do when he was stranded on a deserted island?

I dunno but the engineer managed to sail away on a boat made up of tree bark and leafs.
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Quoting 279. BaltimoreBrian:


What did the mathematician do when he was stranded on a deserted island?

*shrugs*
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32861
Quoting 299. Tornado6042008X:
What high school does Cody go to?


I think Cody would prefer you ask him instead of me :)
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Quoting 293. Bluestorm5:


Your high school is just not normal... I mean, 5 years? At least you'll dominate in college.
What high school does Cody go to?
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Loop
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Quoting 294. Barefootontherocks:

Brownfield, ME wunderphoto by suzi46
Looks like Wilbur is loving the snow there.
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Things are looking up. It made it to 63.5F here today. 53.8 right now and they said it will be 67 tomorrow which is borderline normal for this time of year.
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Quoting 291. CybrTeddy:
You guys are quoting my favorite movie trilogy and didn't invite me!?




lol
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Brownfield, ME wunderphoto by suzi46
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Quoting 278. TropicalAnalystwx13:

Busy!

Trying to finish my 10 page paper for English before I start on my 8 page paper concerning the rule of Queen Elizabeth of England for Western Civ before I start my 3 page literary analysis on the social issues presented in The Great Gatsby for English while trying to complete 2 tests for my online Political Science class, study for my final test in Art Appreciation, and master logarithms for pre-calc.

Nothing out of the ordinary.


Your high school is just not normal... I mean, 5 years? At least you'll dominate in college.
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From NWS State College
Member Since: February 13, 2012 Posts: 11 Comments: 3883
You guys are quoting my favorite movie trilogy and didn't invite me!?

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290. beell
Quoting 284. GTstormChaserCaleb:
Good evening everyone...what is up with the jump discontinuity in the line graph for temperatures, beell?





Forecasts are prepared with a human touch during the work week. Weekends are all numerical and are not counted in the skill scores.
Member Since: September 11, 2007 Posts: 145 Comments: 16924
Quoting 273. Jedkins01:


Plain and simple, don't even bother at 360 hours, I don't even pay attention to solutions that far out lol.

Past five to seven days or so (depending on the volatility of the pattern), ensemble means are far more useful forecasting tools than operational model runs, and even beyond ten days, only trends and tendencies can be be accurately gathered (and sometimes not even that). Lately, I've been trying to cap myself at 240 hours when I look at model guidance, with everything following being pure entertainment, and I feel like it has helped to improve my longer range forecasting.
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Quoting 252. Neapolitan:
FWIW, here's a long video showing the entire mess. As almost always, folks driving too fast for conditions coupled with lack of situational awareness leads to a big mess...

http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=5b4_1386649076

Lack of situational awareness is key here. I am typically of the lead foot variety when it comes to auto racing everyday driving, but I had to drive from Houston back to College Station this past Saturday evening while freezing drizzle was occurring. Knowing that I am completely unproven driving in winter weather and a loss of traction could be catastrophic for me, I kept my speed to between 55 and 60 mph on the highway, a full 15-20 mph under the limit. During my drive I was amazed at how much people were unaware or just simply didn't care about the potential dangerous conditions they were encountering, with most everybody driving at normal speeds. Thankfully I didn't witness an accident that night, but there were a very large number of them and some I apparently had just missed.
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Quoting 285. Patrap:
Jabba did dat...


Carbonite encased Hans Solo

"Well Calrissian, did he survive?"

"Yes he's alive. And in perfect hibernation."
Member Since: Posts: Comments:








Member Since: August 9, 2011 Posts: 26 Comments: 8918
Jabba did dat...


Carbonite encased Hans Solo

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 428 Comments: 129903
Quoting 237. beell:

6-10 Day Heidke Skill Score/6-10 Day Temperature Oulook
11/06 - 12/05 2013



6-10 Day Ranked Probability Skill Score/6-10 Day Temperature Oulook
11/06 - 12/05 2013


Not a particularly awesome month for skill.

Good evening everyone...what is up with the jump discontinuity in the line graph for temperatures, beell?

"What is the coldest place in the world? It is a high ridge above 13,000 feet in Antarctica on the East Antarctic Plateau where temperatures in several hollows can dip below minus 135.8 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 92.2 degrees Celsius) on a clear winter night, announced polar scientist Ted Scambos of the National Snow and Ice Data Center, at a Monday press conference at the AGU conference. The official world cold record of minus 128.6 F (minus 89.2 C), set in 1983 at the Russian Vostok Research Station in East Antarctica will remain intact, though, since official records have to be measured by ground-based instruments. How cold is -135.8F? That%u2019s so cold that it would hurt to breathe, said Dr. Scambos in an AP interview. That%u2019s also well below the -109F temperature that dry ice (frozen carbon dioxide) begins to sublimate into gaseous carbon dioxide. But don%u2019t get your hopes up that we can use the newly-found record cold spot to take CO2 out of the air and solve global warming%u2014you need a temperature of -220F (-140C) to freeze CO2 out the air into dry ice %u201Csnow%u201D at the concentrations that CO2 exists at in our atmosphere (about 398 ppm.) Still, it is an intriguing concept to build giant refrigerators in Antarctica to do just that%u2014something that has been proposed by Purdue climate scientist Ernest Agee, in a research paper titled, CO2 Snow Deposition in Antarctica to Curtail Anthropogenic Global Warming, published earlier this year in the Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology."

Fantastic post Dr. Masters. I would seriously die in temperatures like that. Might as well take the dead bodies of famous people and preserve it in Antarctica.
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Quoting 277. Bluestorm5:
For now and on, I'm adding notes. I only post anything past 120 HR for fun because it's interesting to see what it's thinking :) Beside, some of the snow in DC wasn't really in the models until about 48-60 hours ago.


exactly..our little record of early snow in November wasn't on the models till 48 hours out..it was originally shown in the 300 hour and the models dropped it and picked it back up in short range..

I love posting long range..
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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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