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Advanced Taiwan Ocean Prediction System

Tseng, Tsu-Lun - ALL News | 2018-04-03 | Count:18

Title: NWS Storm Surge Guidance 50 Years of Development at MDL (start at 15:15)


The National Weather Service (NWS) Meteorological Development Lab (MDL) in furtherance of its mission to help protect life and property from disastrous storms has provided NWS forecasters storm surge guidance of various forms over the last 50 years. 

One major outcome of this work starting in the late 1980’s was the development of the US’ comprehensive local hurricane evacuation plans (Shaffer et al, 1989).  Those plans, which continue to be based on simulation runs made at the National Hurricane Center using MDL’s Sea Lake and Overland Surges from Hurricane (SLOSH) model, are among the very few reasons for planned evacuations in the US.  Another major outcome was the recent (2017) development of the NWS’s tropical storm surge watch/warning and inundation graphic which enables forecasters to provide actionable information based on an active tropical cyclone as opposed to hypothetical tropical cyclones.  The tropical storm surge watch/warning and inundation graphic in turn rely upon MDL’s probabilistic tropical cyclone storm surge (P-Surge) model (Taylor et. al., 2008).

This talk will describe the evolution of NWS storm surge guidance from deterministic modeling to real-time ensemble modeling, touching upon both tropical and extra-tropical storm surge guidance.  It will conclude with a discussion of the current challenges which need to be overcome so that when the next storm surge event impacts the US, emergency managers and US citizens will have better tools to base their decisions on.

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