Understanding the Processes that Govern Barrier Island Movement

Presenter: Aundrea Dolan

Understanding the processes that govern barrier island movement will help to better predict impacts of future storm systems.  With South Carolina experiencing hurricanes on an average of once every seven years, monitoring these coastal zones becomes a highly important issue.  Hurricane Hugo is the largest storm to make landfall in South Carolina’s history, with storm surges reaching thirteen feet, wind velocities up to 138 mph, and mean high water storm surges topping twenty feet.  Sexton and Hayes used aerial photograph surveys, beach profiles, and sediment depth profiles to document storm impact and recovery over the course of 26 months.  Seven barrier islands with mesotidal ranges near Charleston, both transgressive and regressive, were monitored throughout this time frame.  Post-Hugo impact included 150 meters of dunes flattened, 18-25 meters of shoreline retreated, and many washover terraces were observed.  New inlets formed from the destruction of recurved spits on trangressive barrier islands, while regressive barrier islands saw mainly small return surge drainage channels.  Recovery on the regressive barriers occurred more slowly than on the trangressive barrier islands.  Trangressive barriers, being erosional in nature, continue to migrate landward post-storm yet show less erosional impact.  Many storm inlets closed up within one year of Hugo’s landfall, and previously exiting inlets did not show any major changes in depth.  Tidal range was found to be a good indicator of future storm impacts, with larger tidal areas experiencing less of a devastating impact.  

Sexton, W., & Hayes, M. (1991). The Geologic Impact of Hurricane Hugo and Post-Storm Shoreline Recovery Along the Undeveloped Coastline of South Carolina, Dewees Island to the Santee Delta. Journal of Coastal Research, Special Issue (8), 275-290.

Join us today for this week's seminar!

Join us this afternoon for 3 seminar presentations by graduate students Jon-Erik Taylor, Alison Bojarski and Samantha Ladewig.
When: Oct. 30 @ 3:00PM
Where: BCCMWS 100

Regional Wind Energy Forum

Improved Tropical Cyclone Forecasts from NCEP Operational HWRF: Progress, Challenges & Opportunities

Presenter: Vijay Tallapragada

In the past few years, the National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) operational Hurricane Weather Research and Forecast (HWRF) modeling system has become one of the best hurricane forecasting models. With the support from NOAA's Hurricane Forecast Improvement Project (HFIP), the HWRF team at NCEP's Environmental Modeling Center (EMC) have expanded the scope of the HWRF model for all tropical oceanic basins of the world, evolving HWRF into a unique regional model with global coverage, providing more skillful real-time track and intensity forecast guidance for all tropical cyclones in the world. The operational HWRF modeling system is also being supported to the research community through NOAA's Developmental Testbed Center (DTC) for academic research and advanced model development for operational needs. Through extensive international collaborations, several operational centers in the Asia-Pacific and South Asian regions have adopted HWRF model for their forecast and research needs.

This presentation will focus on describing performance of the operational HWRF for tropical cyclones of all ocean basins. Significant advancements to the HWRF modeling system have been made possible through focused research and developmental efforts, systematic testing and evaluation, and this presentation will highlight the efficient mechanism established for research transitioning to operations (R2O) through support from HFIP, and possible opportunities for engaging with the HWRF team at EMC to further improve the tropical cyclone forecast skills.

Improvements in predicting the rapid intensity changes, development of advanced inner core data assimilation techniques and application of scale-aware and stochastic physics remain as the high priority area of research done in collaboration with several NOAA agencies, international operational centers and academic partners. High-resolution ensembles and global-to-local scale modeling efforts are going to define the future generation tropical cyclone forecasting tools to meet the operational requirements.


Vijay Tallapragada, Ph.D.
Hurricane Team Leader, NOAA/NWS/NCEP/EMC
5830 University Research Court, College Park, MD 20740, USA
Vijay.Tallapragada@noaa.gov; 301-683-3672; 202-679-5629

Dr. Vijay Tallapragada is the Hurricane Team Leader at NOAA's Environmental Modeling Center (EMC) of National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) in College Park, MD.


Dr. Tallapragada is responsible for developing and implementing state-of-the-art hurricane models for providing operational forecast guidance to the US Operational Tropical Cyclone Forecast Agencies (NHC, CPHC and JTWC). He is instrumental in developing and advancing the NCEP operational Hurricane Weather Research and Forecast (HWRF) modeling system and is leading the modeling and physics strategy team of NOAA’s Hurricane Forecast Improvement Project (HFIP), apart from serving as a steering committee member for NOAA’s Joint Hurricane Testbed (JHT). He coordinates various tropical cyclone research activities within NOAA and partnering government, academic, and private organizations, and designs strategies for effective transition of research to operations. In the recent years, HWRF model has evolved into a unique regional model with global coverage, providing real-time forecast guidance for all tropical cyclones in the world. HWRF is the only operational hurricane model in the world that is available to the research community through NOAA’s Developmental Testbed Center (DTC) which provides support for users and model developers.
Through Dr. Tallapragada’s extensive international collaborations, several operational centers in the Asia-Pacific region have adopted HWRF model for their operational forecast and research needs. Dr. Tallapragada is a member of the Scientific Steering Committee of the China Meteorological Administration (CMA)’s Key Laboratory for Numerical Modeling of Tropical Cyclones and is on various panels for World Meteorological Organization (WMO)’s International Working Group on Tropical Cyclones (IWTC). Dr. Tallapragada is also leading several projects related to tasking aircraft reconnaissance missions using NOAA P3, GIV and NASA Global Hawk platforms to obtain data and assimilate in the operational models for improved hurricane initialization.
Dr. Tallapragada’s research interests involve developing comprehensive high-resolution air-sea-wave-land coupled modeling systems for more accurate tropical cyclone forecasts, studying the role of convective, vortex-scale and large-scale processes influencing tropical cyclone track, structure, and intensity, assessing impact of aircraft and satellite observations using advanced data assimilation techniques, and developing advanced diagnostic methods for evaluating model performance. His recent research work has resulted in addressing the prediction of tropical cyclone rapid intensity changes, and structure forecasts.
Prior to joining NCEP/EMC in 2006, Dr. Tallapragada was a Research Associate at the Department of Meteorology in Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL for seven years, where he was mentored by world renowned tropical meteorologist Prof. T.N. Krishnamurti. Dr. Tallapragada holds a Ph.D. in tropical meteorology, M.Tech. Degree in Atmospheric Science and M.S. Degree in Meteorology. He has more than 50 refereed publications in various journals of international reputation, and has supervised five Ph.D. candidates.
Apart from recognitions at various levels, Dr. Tallapragada is the recipient of the NOAA National Weather Service highest award at the National Level, the Isaac Cline Award for Scientific Leadership for the year 2013.


SCMSS Scientists Return from NW Spain

How a regional hydrodynamic regime interacts with the local topography on a continental shelf and slope has strong control on the diversification of the sedimentary elements in such system. The challenge is to distinguish between the individual effects of geostrophic currents, storm wave action, bottom flow intensities, internal wave trains, etc. which all might find an expression in the sedimentary system.

Night time on the ship

We survey 24 hours a day out here, so the ship is always working. I went outside to check out the stars and snapped this photo looking aft to the streamer deck.

Scientist for Scale

This snapshot gives a sense of scale and how large the cable reels on this ship are.  There are 8 of these giant reels on the back decks!


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