Development of a Real-Time Automated Tropical Cyclone Surface Wind Analysis

This project seeks to create a real-time and fully automated surface wind analysis system at the National Hurricane Center (NHC) by combining the existing satellite-based six-hourly multi-platform tropical cyclone surface wind analysis (MTCSWA) and aircraft reconnaissance data. This project will leverage the automated quality control procedures and variational analysis techniques developed for use in the MTCSWA and previous studies that make use of flight-level wind observations to produce analyses. The most recent MTCSWA will be used as a first guess field for aircraft reconnaissance wind data (flight-level and SFMR), and GPS dropwindsondes that will be composited over a maximum of a 9-hour period of time and analyzed using data weights and smoothness constraints that are found to create an optimal analysis using those inputs. The center location will be determined using a combination of operational best track and aircraft-based center positions The proposed wind analysis would run at NHC and make use of the local data stream and the operational (June 2011) NESDIS MTCSWA product and be ported to NHC JHT servers as access becomes available in summer of 2012. The resulting two-dimensional wind analysis would produce 1-minute sustained winds valid for 10-meter marine exposure in the region where aircraft reconnaissance is typically available (0-200km) with sufficient detail to resolve the radii of maximum winds. This inner core will be combined with the multi-platform tropical cyclone surface wind analysis (MTCSWA) in order to estimate wind radii outside the reconnaissance coverage. Such analyses could then provide useful information for a variety of operational products.