Observations of tropical cyclone low-level wind maxima

Ian M. Giammanco, John L. Schroeder, Mark D. Powell, Douglas A. Smith

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


Mean wind profiles computed from Global Positioning System (GPS) dropsonde data[1] have exhibited a wind speed maximum located near 500 m above ground level (agl); however the wind profile observed by individual GPS dropsonde profiles is highly variable [2][3][4][5]. A group of 1131 GPS sondes were analyzed from the Atlantic and Eastern Pacific basins from 1997-2005 with an emphasis placed on evaluating the characteristics of low-level wind maxima below 200 m agl. Approximately 10% exhibited a maximum wind speed below 200 m agl, with nearly 40% containing the maximum below 500 m agl. A radial and storm relative dependence in the height of the wind speed maximum was also noted. The log-wind profile performed well when compared to mean composite wind profiles for sonde grouped by wind speed bin. In an effort to identify features observed by GPS dropwindsondes, Doppler Weather Surveillance Radar 1988 (WSR-88D)data were used to derive vertical wind profiles using the Velocity Azimuth Display (VAD) technique [6] (Browning and Wexler) for 9 landfalling tropical cyclones.

Original languageEnglish
StatePublished - 2009
Event11th Americas Conference on Wind Engineering - San Juan, Puerto Rico
Duration: Jun 22 2009Jun 26 2009


Conference11th Americas Conference on Wind Engineering
Country/TerritoryPuerto Rico
CitySan Juan


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