Eos, Transactions American Geophysical Union

Hydrological and meteorological experimentation at the mesoscale



For the past few years, several sectors of the U.S. meteorological community have been actively planning and organizing the National STORM Program. STORM is an acronym for Stormscale Operational and Research Meteorology, and its first major project, called STORM-Central, will focus on the central third of the United States [Interagency Team for STORM-Central, 1984]. The overall objective of STORM is to obtain knowledge and techniques that will be useful in forecasting mid-latitude mesoscale convective systems and their attendant weather. Such systems cause most of the beneficial precipitation and almost all of the threatening events, such as violent thunderstorms, flash floods, hail, high winds, and tornados. The experimental phase of STORM-Central is now scheduled to take place during the period April–July of 1988 and/or 1989. An upper-air sounding system with a resolution of 200 km will be deployed over an area from the Gulf Coast of Canada and from the Rocky Mountains to the central Ohio Valley. Within this network a smaller, (i.e., meso-beta) network will be embedded; this subnetwork will be covered by conventional radars, by upper-air soundings with a resolution of 100 km, and by automated surface observations with a 40-km resolution. Finally, a central part of this area will be monitored by a high-resolution Doppler radar array. This experiment will provide a data set with a high spatial and temporal resolution that is without precedent.