As the severe weather season kicks into gear across the plains, the largest severe weather research team ever assembled is reading to hunt down the seasons most destructive storms. On May 10th, over 15 organizations will launch VORTEX 2. According to N.O.A.A., “VORTEX 2 is the largest most ambitious attempt to study tornadoes in history and will involve more than 50 scientists, 40 research vehicles, including 10 mobile radars.” The group plans to chase and study tornadoes across tornado alley for over a month.
Results from the experiment will be presented this fall at Penn State University. This campaign follows the original “VORTEX” research done in 1994 and 1995. Scientists hope this years study will lead to a better understanding of how and why tornadoes form and how we can more accurately predict them.
How exciting…there are so many people who chase tornadoes every season. The funding and knowledge can vary from each group. I’ve seen heavily funded groups with all the tools including a Doppler on wheels. And all the way down to mom and dad with the kids in the back of the pick up truck chasing storms down dirt roads. To actually have this collaboration of the best of the best can only be a great thing. Research done during this month, could improve storm forecasting in decades to come.
Meteorologist Brian Niznansky
This post was written by bniznansky on April 6, 2009