Subscribe to our free daily newsletters
. Earth Science News .




Subscribe to our free daily newsletters



SHAKE AND BLOW
Central pressure deficit, not wind speed, best to predict hurricane damage
by Staff Writers
West Lafayette IN (SPX) Nov 14, 2017


File image

The system for categorizing hurricanes accounts only for peak wind speeds, but research published in Nature Communications explains why central pressure deficit is a better indicator of economic damage from storms in the United States.

"Sandy is the classic example. It was a very big storm, but in terms of maximum wind speed it was arguably not a hurricane," said Dan Chavas, an assistant professor of atmospheric science at Purdue University who led the study. "If you looked at the central pressure deficit, you would have expected it to cause a lot of damage. But if you used maximum wind speed, as people usually do, you wouldn't expect it to do the damage that it did."

Central pressure deficit refers to the difference in pressure between the center of the storm and outside it. Pressure and wind speed have been used interchangeably to estimate potential damage from hurricanes for years, but the relationship between them has been a long-standing riddle in tropical meteorology.

Chavas and his colleagues have defined a theory that solves that riddle. Previous work has observed that central pressure deficit depends on maximum wind speed, storm size, and latitude, but Chavas' team has determined why that is.

Scientists could use this theory to calculate peak wind speed if they had numbers for the other metrics in the equation, which could come in handy because wind speeds need to be measured at several points of a storm, making it difficult to get an accurate reading.

The research team tested their theory on two simulations of Earth.

The first used the actual distribution of sea surface temperatures and solar radiation since 1979 to produce conditions similar to real historical climate.

The second simulation produced a very simplified version of the Earth. It had no land, and ocean temperature and solar radiation were the same everywhere. This made the entire planet sort of like the tropics, meaning hurricanes could pop up anywhere - but they still tended to form at low latitudes and move westward and toward the poles, like they do on Earth.

"The idea is that if we test our theory in this very simple world, and then take it to the real world where everything is much more complicated and we get the same results, all that complexity is irrelevant," Chavas said. "People tend to work in different worlds - either the simplified world or the real world, and they don't talk to each other that much. We're bridging that gap."

The limitations of the official scale for hurricane categorization, the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale, have come under scrutiny recently. The wind speed meteorologists settle on is often only an estimate, and it's also highly localized because it depends on a speed sustained for a short time in one location. However, it's popular with the public and media because of its simplicity.

Some have advocated for new systems of categorization, including the Cyclone Damage Potential Index and the Integrated Kinetic Energy index. Both of these systems take into account factors other than wind speed - the idea being that more variables make a scale more valuable.

Boiling down a storm's complexity to a single number may be unrealistic, but there are surely ways to improve the current system. The Purdue team's work shows that central pressure deficit itself may achieve this goal, or at least do a better job than maximum wind speed alone.

Research paper

SHAKE AND BLOW
More than 90 killed in Vietnam's deadliest typhoon in years
Danang, Vietnam (AFP) Nov 9, 2017
More than 90 people have perished in floods and landslides unleashed in Vietnam by Typhoon Damrey, one of the deadliest storms to hit the country in years. The typhoon made landfall on Saturday, blowing off roofs and submerging huge swathes of Vietnam's south-central coast, including outside the city of Danang where leaders are gathering for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summ ... read more

Related Links
Purdue University
Bringing Order To A World Of Disasters
When the Earth Quakes
A world of storm and tempest


Thanks for being here;
We need your help. The SpaceDaily news network continues to grow but revenues have never been harder to maintain.

With the rise of Ad Blockers, and Facebook - our traditional revenue sources via quality network advertising continues to decline. And unlike so many other news sites, we don't have a paywall - with those annoying usernames and passwords.

Our news coverage takes time and effort to publish 365 days a year.

If you find our news sites informative and useful then please consider becoming a regular supporter or for now make a one off contribution.

SpaceDaily Contributor
$5 Billed Once


credit card or paypal
SpaceDaily Monthly Supporter
$5 Billed Monthly


paypal only

Comment using your Disqus, Facebook, Google or Twitter login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

SHAKE AND BLOW
Climate change imperils one in four UNESCO natural sites

Allianz confident for 2017 after hurricane-battered Q3

Dutch to give storm-hit isles 600 mln euros to rebuild

Back to school in Puerto Rico, but still without power

SHAKE AND BLOW
A new way to mix oil and water

Building better silk

Measuring atoms for better navigation and mineral detection

Discovery of a new structure family of oxide-ion conductors SrYbInO4

SHAKE AND BLOW
How a 'shadow zone' traps the world's oldest ocean water

Researchers use forensic science to track turtles

A well changes lives in ravaged Mali city

50 years of data from oxygen minimum lab helps predict the oceans' future

SHAKE AND BLOW
A new timeline for glacial retreat in Western Canada

Research shows ice sheets as large as Greenland's melted fast in a warming climate

Hot News from the Antarctic Underground

Chinese icebreaker steams for Antarctica in polar power play

SHAKE AND BLOW
Cover crops shield soil from extreme temps

Chinese company offers lifetime of booze for $1,700 on Alibaba

Sensors applied to plant leaves warn of water shortage

WSU researcher sees huge carbon sink in soil minerals

SHAKE AND BLOW
Strong quake rocks Costa Rica

Iran hunts for survivors as quake kills 400 near Iraq border

Central pressure deficit, not wind speed, best to predict hurricane damage

More than 90 killed in Vietnam's deadliest typhoon in years

SHAKE AND BLOW
US investigators return to scene of Niger ambush

Dozens of new wildlife corridors identified for African mammals

Judges finish investigation into Guinea stadium massacre

Niger ambush probe to last until at least January: Pentagon

SHAKE AND BLOW
Finger and toe fossils belonged to tiny primates 45 million years ago

Japanese scientists estimate the mutation rate from chimpanzee parents to their offspring

Faith not linked to intuition or rational thinking, study shows

Tracking collars reveal raiding strategies used by hungry baboons




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News






The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2017 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement