There was no gold medal, no podium ceremony, and definitely no tears from the losers on 30 July, but there was a new national champion. On that date, NOAA proclaimed that a South Dakota hailstone had surpassed all contenders in both size and weight.
It’s not exactly a moment for celebration, but when a tropical storm is born in the Atlantic, millions of people learn about it quickly. As with any birth, though, a great deal has to happen in just the right way before a tropical storm is christened.
On December 20, 2008, a Boeing 737 with Continental Airlines encountered a crosswind gust during takeoff at Denver International Airport, causing it to veer off the runway. Simulations done at NCAR indicate that a mountain lee wave amplified over DIA within minutes of the accident.
NCAR scientists are collaborating with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to help fight plague in Uganda. Plague is believed to have been responsible for the Black Death pandemic that swept Europe in the 14th century, killing more than 25 million people.
A turbulence warning system alerting pilots landing at and departing from Juneau International Airport in southeast Alaska has taken a significant step toward completion with the integration of Federal Aviation Administration radio communications into the system.
In the spring of 2009, researchers on the Second Verification of the Origins of Rotation in Tornadoes Experiment (VORTEX2) field project set out across the Great Plains to study tornadoes, but that’s not the only phenomenon they observed.
Cirrus clouds—thin strands or sheets usually composed of ice crystals—form high in the atmosphere. A new study led by NCAR scientist Steve Massie employs satellite technology to observe the clouds in greater detail than before.
The year 2010 brought a difficult and sometimes tragic few months of weather events—first the snowstorms and record cold that battered much of the Northern Hemisphere, then tornadoes and floods in the United States.
After a very unusual tornado caused extensive damage along a 34-mile (55-kilometer) swath of northern Colorado in 2008, a team of scientists from NCAR and Colorado State University undertook a multidisciplinary study integrating meteorology, climatology, and social science.
Residents of the mid-Atlantic can be forgiven if they’re craving a bit of calm. The weekend of 5–6 February brought what’s been variously dubbed Snowpocalypse II, Snowmageddon, Snowtastrophe, and the Superbowl Superstorm.
The giant comma-shaped storm systems that traverse the Midwest from fall through spring carry more than a few secrets. Radar, lidar, and profiler beams are now slicing through those storms, hunting for small-scale features that normally go unobserved.