Tricked out Gulfstream jet to test new storm forecast model

8:26 AM, May 13, 2013   |    comments
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KUSA - Researchers at the National Center For Atmospheric Research (NCAR) are announcing a new project to help forecasters do a better job predicting severe thunderstorms.

They'll be using a specially outfitted Gulfstream V research jet based at Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport that, over the next month, will take a series of high-altitude measurements of thunderstorm cells, including sensors that will be dropped into the heart of storms from an altitude of 40,000 feet.

Those readings will be combined with weather balloon data and simulations of upper atmospheric disturbances in what researchers are calling the Mesoscale Predictability Experiment or MPEX. NCAR hopes all of this will improve weather forecast lead times during what's typically a crucial six- to 24-hour window for predicting thunderstorms.



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