The outlook for tropical cyclone intensity forecasts from operational and from research perspectives was discussed during a panel discussion at the 19th Conference on Hurricanes and Tropical Meteorology. Whereas the operational requirement at the National Hurricane Center is to predict maximum 1-min sustained wind speeds at specific locations, the research community is addressing the prediction of the maximum wind or minimum sea level pressure in the storm. Commonality was found in the forecast strategies for subjectively predicting storm intensity. The panelists suggested improvements may be gained from additional observations, better conceptual and theoretical models of storm structure and behavior, and enhancements in statistical and numerical models.The discussion period brought out opposing viewpoints on a number of topics. Both new observations and better use of the existing observations were believed to be necessary. The limitations and advantages of remotely sensed data for this problem were raised. The most vigorous debates were on the physical processes, such as existence or nonexistence of coupling between outer and inner core structure, and whether convection is simply a response to forcing or is an essential contributor to uncertainty in intensity forecasting. Several participants suggested that uncertainties related to the sea surface temperature and its evolution also contribute to the intensity forecast problem. Some specific suggestions for improving intensity forecasts are given in terms of new observations, new basic understandings, and new applied developments.
Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society – American Meteorological Society
Published: Mar 1, 1992
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