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Earth and Environment Graduate Seminar

This is a past event.

Monday, March 27, 2023 at 2:00pm to 3:05pm

AHC5, 201

Future direction for hurricane research

by Dr. Flank Marks


In response to the 2017 Weather Research and Forecasting Innovation Act NOAA developed a plan detailing the specific research, development, and technology transfer activities to address the Act’s three main objectives: 1) improving the prediction of intensity and track of TCs; 2) improving the forecast and communication of surges from TCs; and 3) incorporating risk communication research to create more effective watch and warning products. The plan outlined the key research strategies to improve tropical cyclone (TC) forecast guidance. However, the current forecast products, metrics, and verification fall short of those needed to meet the goals outlined in the plan. Future TC research objectives must expand beyond model development activities to address impacts from hurricanes (e.g., wind, surge, inland flooding, severe weather) and incorporate risk communication research to create more effective TC products. Currently, the uncertainty in TC hazard guidance is expressed based on past performance, not on current forecast uncertainty. Model improvements must also be in sync with data assimilation (DA) improvements to produce reliable analyses to better characterize the uncertainty in storm structure needed to address the risk for all hazards. More research is needed to improve probabilistic hazard guidance by utilizing model machine learning to consider uncertainty of track, intensity, and structure for each storm. Finally, there is a need to support social and behavioral science research to improve the communication of risk and uncertainty for emergency managers and the public through more effective TC products. Future research opportunities should utilize the FACETs framework to transform TC hazard guidance blending social and behavioral science with physical science research and development to address resiliency to tropical cyclones.

Event Type



General Public

Department of Earth and Environment
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