A systematic satellite approach for estimating central surface pressures of mid-latitude cold season oceanic cyclones

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Smigielski, Frank J. ; Mogil, H. Michael (2011)

During the past 5 years, the National Environmental Satellite, Data and Information Service (NESDIS) has undertaken a major operationally-focused study of mid-latitude ocean cyclones in support of various National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and Department of Defense (DoD) programs. The intent was to develop techniques for improving the accuracy of surface pressure analyses over ocean areas where conventional surface data is limited. The study focused on the North Atlantic Ocean initially. Current research has included North Pacific Ocean cyclones, as well. We examined more than 5 dozen storms and developed conceptual models which described their growth and decay. We then incorporated the work of Smigielski, Junker and Haller and Dvorak to develop a set of operationally-focused, user friendly, decision trees. The technique (referred to as the SMB technique, for its originators) has been applied operationally in the Atlantic for about 3 years, and in the Pacific for slightly more than 1 years. Results suggest that the technique provides very reliable estimates of central pressure for certain categories of storms. Errors are typically ± 4mb from in-situ data (when such data is available).DOI: 10.1034/j.1600-0870.1995.00126.x
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