Tropical Cyclone Formation/Structure/Motion Studies
NAVAL POSTGRADUATE SCHOOL MONTEREY CA DEPT OF METEOROLOGY
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One objective of this project is to identify the physical mechanisms in the large-scale circulation that act to initiate, maintain, and terminate periods of enhanced or reduced tropical cyclone activity over the western North Pacific. If reliable forecasts of extended periods of increased or reduced tropical cyclone activity could be made, maritime operations could be coordinated appropriately. Also, improved decision processes with respect to fleet avoidance or sortie could be implemented at increased lead times. Additional objectives relate to the predictability associated with tropical cyclone formation and extratropical transition. The ability of operational global numerical forecast models to predict the formation of a tropical cyclone is examined. The goal is to provide guidance that conveys a forecast confidence as to whether a specific tropical disturbance will intensify into a tropical cyclone. Structural changes in a mature tropical cyclone are examined as the tropical cyclone moves poleward and begins the ET process. The impacts on predictability are assessed in terms of the increased variability that is introduced into the midlatitude circulation by the ET event and with respect to the predictability associated with the downstream impacts of the ET. The goal is to determine specific aspects of ET that are least predictable by examining forecast characteristics that are most inconsistent among multiple integrations of several operational global numerical models and global model ensemble forecast systems. Also, the structural evolution of the decaying tropical cyclone as it transitions from a tropical to extratropical cyclone is examined to identify important environment conditions associated with an ET that may impact operational forecasts of the environmental conditions related to maritime operations near an ET event.