The Greater Miami Chapter of the AMS presents
"The Digital Hurricane Consortium"
Dr. Forrest Masters
University of Florida

Monday March 9, 2009 at 3:00 pm.
NWSFO/TPC Media room
Miami, FL

The March meeting of the Greater Miami chapter of the AMS convened at 3 PM in the media room of the NWSFO/TPC. There were 40 people in attendance. After alerting members to the online location of our proposed chapter by-laws there was a brief treasury report by Rusty Pfost and an update on the AMS minority scholarship candidates from Derek Ortt.

The seminar "The Digital Hurricane Consortium" was then delivered by Dr. Forrest Masters of the University of Florida. Dr. Masters described the growth of the use of portable observing platforms by various academic institutions interested in examining hurricanes at landfall through the 1990s and into the 21st Century. After describing the different wind anemometers, mobile Doppler radars, and storm surge gauges, he used Hurricane Ike's landfall to illustrate the distribution of observations in the Houston area. He then noted that heretofore each institution had acted independently, resulting in an uncoordinated distribution of resources within the landfall area.

The Consortium, made up of nine academic entities, will seek to coordinate these efforts in the future. Not only will this ensure a more organized positioning of mobile platforms, but will allow for integrated real-time datasets to be available to the National Weather Service, emergency managers, and to research organizations. It is also hoped the Consortium will better attract funding at the national level.

For now the Consortium is meeting with potential users to understand their needs and tailoring their programs to meet those needs. Dr. Masters emphasized the demand for more Information Technology experts within the Consortium to aid in the standardization of datasets, quality control of output, and ready access to massive amounts of information being made available in real-time.

There followed a discussion with the audience over particulars of the equipment and the methods planned for accessing Doppler radar data. The meeting adjourned at 4:15 PM.

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