Aloha`s Wednesday Weather Report
Aloha`s Thursday Weather Report Play video .Aloha`s Monday Weather Report Play video .Aloha`s Tuesday Weather Report Play video .Kyle`s Thursday Weather Report Play video .Midday Weather Report For Sunday, September 1, 201 … Play video .2 hrs 29 mins ago 3:14 KSWB – San Diego Fox 5 Meteorologist Aloha Taylor gives the weather report for Wednesday, Sept. 11, 2013
Hurricane Humberto just misses setting recordKatherine Jacobsen 9 hours ago Tropical cyclone Hurricane Humberto, as the first such storm of the season, would have been the tardiest to form if it had been three hours later. The hurricane was located west-northwest of the Cape Verde Islands on Wednesday.The National Hurricane Center (NHC) declared Humberto a hurricane at 5 a.m. on Wednesday – meaning the storm, the first hurricane of the season, missed the title of being the tardiest such storm by a mere three hours.At the time of the announcement, Humberto was located 310 miles west-northwest of the Cape Verde Islands and was producing winds of approximately 75 miles per hour, making it a Category 1 storm. But Humberto is unlikely to make it to land: The storm is expected to strengthen Wednesday before weakening on Thursday, according to an NHC report. RECOMMENDED: Hurricane preparedness: 5 things you can do to keep safe The Category 1 designation indicates four-to-five-foot water surges, but any damage from such storms is usually minimal.Since 1967, when meteorologists began using satellites to track storms, the first hurricane of the season that formed the latest materialized at 8 a.m. on Sept. 11, 2002, Dennis Feltgen, an NHC spokesman, told Bloomberg. The earliest hurricane on record was named April 20, 2003, according to Weather.com. The Atlantic hurricane season runs from June 1 to Nov. 30.This hurricane season has been one of the calmest on record. There have been eight named storms thus far, but none gathered enough intensity to be rated as hurricanes until Humberto. A storm is given a name if it becomes a tropical storm, meaning that the storm’s winds have reached 63 miles per hour. A tropical storm is then declared a hurricane only if winds reach 74 miles an hour.Another storm, Gabrielle, recently passed west-southwest of Bermuda and is expected to weaken in the next 72 hours. It drenched the Bermuda islands on Monday, the NHC reports. “A slow northwestward motion is expected to resume later today and continue through the night,” Michael Brennan, a senior hurricane specialist at the NHC in Miami, said in an advisory, as reported by Bloomberg. “A gradual turn toward the north is expected Thursday and Thursday night.”The turn will put the storm on track to sweep by Nova Scotia and Newfoundland later this week, according to Environment Canada.RECOMMENDED: Hurricane prep: Are you smarter than a storm tracker? Take our quiz.
Train derailment delays traffic in S.E. CalgaryCBC – 1 hour 35 minutes agoView PhotoEmergency crews are currently on the scene of a train derailment in southeast Calgary. …Play VideoCN, CP tighten rail safetyCBC.ca Videos 3:14 Canadian Pacific Railway says eight tanker cars containing diluent have come off the tracks in southeast Calgary late this afternoon.A spokesperson with CP says a train was leaving the Alyth Rail Yard when the cars derailed at 19th Avenue and 15th Street.Officials say they’re not aware that any of the cars are leaking and nobody was injured.Petroleum diluent is used to thin petroleum products, including bitumen from the oilsands, to help transport them through pipelines.CP has a response team at the scene. Police are advising traffic to avoid the area.Officials are planning to close some roads, including Blackfoot Trail and Ninth Avenue. No homes are being evacuated at this time.Some Calgary Transit routes near the scene are also being detoured.
ROME (Reuters) – The wrecked Costa Concordia cruise ship could be upright again next week, nearly two years after the liner capsized and killed at least 30 people off the Italian coast.The giant vessel, which has lain partly submerged in shallow waters off the Tuscan island of Giglio since the accident in January 2012, will be rolled off the seabed and onto underwater platforms.Workers will look for the bodies of two people, an Italian and an Indian unaccounted for since the disaster, as machines haul the 114,000-tonne ship upright and underwater cameras comb the seabed.The exact day of the Concordia’s rotation – known as parbuckling – has yet to be set, but on Wednesday Civil Protection Commissioner Franco Gabrielli said Monday was likely.The Costa Concordia hit a rock when it maneuver too close to the island, prompting a chaotic evacuation of more than 4,000 passengers and crew, in one of the most dramatic marine accidents in recent history.Divers have pumped 18,000 metric tons of cement into bags below the ship to support it and prevent it from breaking up in an operation which is expected to last 8-10 hours and is part of a salvage operation estimated to cost at least $300 million.A buoyancy device acting „like a neck brace for an injured patient” will hold together the ship’s bow, and fishing nets will catch debris as it rises from beneath the ship, said Nicholas Sloane, senior salvage master at Titan Salvage.The salvage team will go through the ship cabin by cabin and had over items found on board to the Italian state prosecutor, and the vessel will be towed away to be dismantled.Four Costa Concordia crew members and a Costa Cruises company official were sentenced to jail in July for their part in the accident, and the ship’s captain Francesco Schettino remains on trial for manslaughter and causing the loss of the ship.The captain is accused of abandoning ship before all crew and passengers had been rescued. A coastguard’s angry phone order to him – „Get back on board, damn it!” – became a catchphrase in Italy after the accident.(Reporting by Eleanor Biles; writing by Naomi O’Leary; editing by Emma Farge)
WASHINGTON – Wind energy facilities have killed at least 67 golden and bald eagles in the last five years, but the figure could be much higher, according to a new scientific study by government biologists.The research represents one of the first tallies of eagle deaths attributed to the nation’s growing wind energy industry, which has been a pillar of President Barack Obama’s plans to reduce the pollution blamed for global warming. Wind power releases no air pollution.But at a minimum, the scientists wrote, wind farms in 10 states have killed at least 85 eagles since 1997, with most deaths occurring between 2008 and 2012, as the industry was greatly expanding. Most deaths — 79 — were golden eagles that struck wind turbines. One of the eagles counted in the study was electrocuted by a power line.The vice-president of the American Bird Conservancy, Mike Parr, said the tally was „an alarming and concerning finding.”A trade group, the American Wind Energy Association, said in a statement that the figure was much lower than other causes of eagle deaths. The group said it was working with the government and conservation groups to find ways to reduce eagle casualties.Still, the scientists said their figure is likely to be „substantially” underestimated, since companies report eagle deaths voluntarily and only a fraction of those included in their total were discovered during searches for dead birds by wind-energy companies. The study also excluded the deadliest place in the country for eagles, a cluster of wind farms in a northern California area known as Altamont Pass. Wind farms built there decades ago kill more than 60 per year.The research affirms an AP investigation in May, which revealed dozens of eagle deaths from wind energy facilities and described how the Obama administration was failing to fine or prosecute wind energy companies, even though each death is a violation of federal law.The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which employs the six researchers, has said it is investigating 18 bird-death cases involving wind-power facilities, and seven have been referred to the Justice Department. The authors noted the study’s findings do not necessarily reflect the views of the agency, although some of their data was obtained from staff.Wind farms are clusters of turbines as tall as 30-story buildings, with spinning rotors as wide as a passenger jet’s wingspan. Though the blades appear to move slowly, they can reach speeds up to 170 mph at the tips, creating tornado-like vortexes.Wind farms in two states, California and Wyoming, were responsible for 58 deaths, followed by facilities in Oregon, New Mexico, Colorado, Washington, Utah, Texas, Maryland and Iowa.In all, 32 facilities were implicated. One in Wyoming was responsible for a dozen golden eagle deaths, the most at a single facility.The research was published in the Journal of Raptor Research.___Follow Dina Cappiello on Twitter: www.twitter.com/dinacappiello
VANCOUVER – The number of humpback whales on the northern coast of British Columbia nearly doubled in eight years, but possible oil spills could seriously hamper recovery efforts involving the threatened mammals, a new study suggests.The acoustic animals known for their songs on breeding and feeding grounds were photographed and identified through unique markings on their massive flukes, or tails, around Gil Island, a summertime feeding destination for the migratory animals heading to Hawaii.Lead author and marine conservation biologist Erin Ashe of the B.C.-based group Oceans Initiative said the number of whales in the study area increased from 70 humpbacks in 2004 to 137 whales in 2011.The study, published in the online journal PLOS ONE on Wednesday, said the animals tend to be concentrated in the coastal fjord, where tanker traffic would increase if the federal government approves a proposed pipeline to ship large volumes of crude oil through the region to Kitimat, B.C.Ashe, who is also a PhD candidate at the University of St. Andrews in Fife, Scotland, said any oil spills could be catastrophic for humpback whales, which can be as long as long as a city bus and weigh up to 40 tonnes.Ashe, who analyzed the photos, said about 30,000 whales were hunted in the Pacific region covering B.C., Washington, Oregon, California and Alaska and that about 1,200 whales were left before they were listed as threatened in Canada and endangered in the United States.Humpbacks were legally hunted in Canada’s Pacific region until 1966, a year after whalers killed the last humpback in B.C. waters.Ashe said that while recovery efforts are encouraging, any more threats to humpbacks must be managed to ensure their long-term survival.”It’s encouraging that the numbers are increasing, and we see that throughout the north Pacific that humpback whales are recovering. But I think it’s important not to get complacent because they are not fully recovered and also to view their recovery in the context of these new threats that could impact the population.”So while they’re still at this important recovery stage it would be a shame to inundate them with this additional threat,” said Ashe, adding the humpbacks are sometimes seen with wounds from propellers and fishing gear.The panel weighing the proposed Northern Gateway oil pipeline heard that about 220 tankers carrying crude a year would use the waterways of the north coast if the pipeline is approved.The B.C. government’s plans to put liquified natural gas into ships bound for Asia would also increase the number of tankers leaving the northern coast.In June 2012, a humpback that beached itself off a White Rock, B.C., beach had become trapped in fishing gear through its mouth.In May, a Campbell River man whose boat collided with a humpback whale needed facial surgery, prompting marine life researchers to warn boaters to be careful because of an increasing number of humpback whales around Vancouver Island.Ashe said the man went through the windshield and it’s likely that the whale was also injured.Industrial developments are dramatically changing shipping patterns in the Gil Island area, considered critical habitat for the whales, which are vulnerable to being struck by the vessels, she said.The so-called acrobats of the ocean, with dive sequences where the whales slam their flukes into the water, have also led to a growing whale-watching business.That has increased noise levels for the humpbacks, which rely on sound to communicate with each other.”Repeated disturbance can affect behaviour and activities of humpback whales,” said the study, which also included surveys done by the Gitga’at First Nation.”An increase in the cumulative impact of stressors that humpback whales experience on feeding grounds could carry costs to substantial fractions of the population,” the study said, adding habitat loss in B.C. would affect the animals at a particularly vulnerable time in their life.”Humpback whales undergo one of the longest migrations of any mammal. Therefore anthropogenic activities affecting humpback whales on B.C.’s feeding grounds would impact individuals at a point when they have gone several months without feeding, and may lack resilience to cope with additional human-caused stressors.”
Sipping Tarantula Venom Kills Crop-Eating InsectsBy By Tanya Lewis, Staff Writer | LiveScience.com – 6 hours agoView PhotoA new protein discovered in the venom of Australian tarantulas can kill prey insects …View PhotoResearcher Margaret C. Hardy milks an Australian tarantula.The venom in a tarantula’s fangs packs a lethal punch when injected into its prey.But the toxic brew could also serve as an insecticide against agricultural pests that consume the venom orally, a new study finds. A component of the spider venom is especially effective against the cotton bollworm, a pest that attacks crop plants.Globally, insect agricultural pests reduce crop yields by 10 percent to 14 percent and damage 9 percent to 20 percent of stored food crops. Farmers primarily use chemical insecticides to control pests, but many insects are resistant to them.In the last decade, researchers have been investigating „bioinsecticides,” proteins derived from natural sources such as spider venom. [Photos: The World’s Creepiest Spiders]In the study, researchers milked venom from Australian tarantulas (Selenotypus plumipes), and isolated a small peptide — a molecular building block of cells — from the deadly substance. They fed the peptide to termites and cotton bollworms, and compared the effects with those of mealworms injected with the peptide.When ingested by insects, the poisonous chemical, called orally active insecticidal peptide-1, was as toxic as the synthetic insecticide imidacloprid, the group reported today (Sept. 11) in the journal PLOS ONE. A combination of the venom peptide and synthetic insecticide was even more effective.The venom was more potent against cotton bollworms than against termites and mealworms, which eat stored grains rather than crops, results showed.Venoms from other insect-eating animals, such as centipedes and scorpions, may also contain peptides that could be used as bioinsecticides. Or, scientists could genetically engineer insect-resistant plants or microbes that produce these toxins.”The breakthrough discovery that spider toxins can have oral activity has implications not only for their use as bioinsecticides, but also for spider-venom peptides that are being considered for therapeutic use,” study researcher Glenn King of the Institute for Molecular Bioscience at the University of Queensland, Australia, said in a statement.S. plumipes is one of Australia’s largest spiders, but is not harmful to humans.Follow Tanya Lewis on Twitter and Google+. Follow us @livescience, Facebook & Google+. Original article on LiveScience.
TORONTO – A review of 3,500 CT scans and mammograms is being conducted at hospitals in Toronto and Mississauga for possible errors due to a „performance issue” with a radiologist.Trillium Health Partners says the tests were conducted between April 1, 2012 and March 31, 2013 at Mississauga Hospital and Queensway Health Centre.It says a performance issue with a radiologist who no longer works for the hospitals prompted the review, which will look into the accuracy of the test results.Trillium said patients and doctors whose scans are involved in the review are being notified, and will be followed up with directly after their tests have been checked.”We apologize for any concern the news of this review may cause and want our patients and community to know it is being done to ensure the highest quality of care at our hospital,” Trillium president and CEO Michelle DiEmanuele said Wednesday night in a release.An external review will be conducted by a team led by Dr. Brian Yemen, chief of diagnostic imaging at Juravinski Hospital and Cancer Centre and McMaster University Medical Centre.The review will be expanded as necessary and made public once it is complete, Trillium said.Phone lines have been set up for patients and doctors concerned about the review of the scans.”Delivering high quality care and patient safety is our top priority,” Trillium chief of staff Dr. Dante Morra said in a release.Earlier this year, it was revealed that about 1,200 cancer patients in Ontario and New Brunswick had received watered-down treatments, some for as long as a year.An expert report prepared for the Ontario government called on Health Canada to regulate the preparation of all drug mixtures outside licensed pharmacies.The report by Dr. Jake Thiessen also urged Ontario to bring in stronger rules for licensed pharmacies.And in 2011, a Windsor, Ont., surgeon who performed two unnecessary mastectomies was cautioned by Ontario’s medical regulatory college.Dr. Barbara Heartwell became the subject of several investigations after it was revealed she mistakenly removed the healthy breasts of two women at Hotel-Dieu Grace Hospital.A provincial report into pathology errors largely cleared Heartwell, but uncovered „significant concerns” with pathologist Dr. Olive Williams’ work.After reviewing more than 6,000 reports stretching back to 2003, investigators had moderate or major disagreements with the original diagnosis in 221 of the cases by Williams.
View PhotoTransportation Safety Board Regional Senior Investigator Donald Ross points to a …Play VideoLac-Megantic investigationCBC.ca Videos 10:12 OTTAWA – The crude oil that exploded into flame in the deadly Lac-Megantic train derailment in July was as volatile as gasoline, but was documented as a less-dangerous product akin to diesel or bunker crude, the Transportation Safety Board says.Lead investigator Don Ross said tests showed the oil was initially graded properly for road transport but was inexplicably downgraded when it came time to move it by rail.”When we analysed the product samples from the nine intact tank cars from the Lac-Megantic accident we identified the product as having the characteristics of a packing group 2 flammable liquid,” he told a news conference Wednesday.”Packing group 2 is the packing group that gasoline is in.”The Lac-Megantic oil was improperly identified as a less-hazardous packing group 3 product, and investigators want to know why.”We’re asking those questions,” Ross said.”Is there any motivation? Why would that be shown the way it was, whether there was any commercial interest, any operating reason? We’re asking all those questions.”The July 6 crash killed 47 people and destroyed much of the centre of the picturesque Quebec town after an unmanned, runaway train derailed and exploded in a fireball.Almost immediately there were questions about why a rupture of crude-oil tank cars proved so explosive.The TSB analyzed the Lac-Megantic oil, as well as from another train farther down the tracks carrying crude from the same supplier. Both were more volatile than their placards indicated.”The lower flash point of the crude oil explains in part why the crude oil ignited so quickly once the Class 111 tank cars were breached,” Ross said.The board’s report says the oil in the train came from 11 different wells in the Bakken Shale formation of North Dakota. The various shipments had initially been classified differently, with some rated in the most volatile packing group 1. When trucked to the rail terminal by several different firms, the oil was all labelled group 2.But for purposes of the rail shipment to Sant John, N.B., the entire load was graded as the least volatile packing group 3.Cargo volatility plays into what type of rail car is used, said Ross, „which also calls into question the adequacy of Class 111 tank cars for transporting large quantities of low flashpoint flammable liquids.”Older DOT-111 tankers, the most common tank cars on the rails, have been criticized since the 1980s because their hulls are easily breached in a collision or derailment.The safety board has issued a directive asking regulators in both Canada and the U.S. to look at the way hazardous goods are documented.Transport Minister Lisa Raitt responded with a statement saying she has directed her officials „to examine this recommendation as quickly as possible.””If a company does not properly classify its goods, they can be prosecuted under the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Act.”But NDP transport critic Olivia Chow said that’s not enough.”We call on the Conservative government to follow (U.S.) President Obama’s lead in launching more spot checks and safety inspections to ensure proper labelling of railway cars carrying dangerous materials,” Chow said in a release.”Likewise, the dangerous DOT-111A tanker cars have to be retired or upgraded immediately.”It’s not yet clear is how an improperly graded cargo may have played into the Lac-Megantic disaster.Ross said firefighters who battled the inferno would not have responded any differently.There are also no rules that cite cargo volatility to limit the number of tank cars that can be carried by a single train.Ross said it is the responsibility of the buyer — in this case Irving Oil — to ensure rail carriers are properly apprised of the cargo characteristics. It was a subsidiary of the American supplier — Miami-based World Fuel Services — that gave CP Rail and the Montreal, Maine and Atlantic Railway, or MMA, the erroneous packing group 3 information.World Fuel Services said in an email that the Lac-Megantic cargo was identified in the proper class, but the company did not respond to questions about why the packing group was changed from 2 to 3.”The packing group assigned to this cargo would not have changed the manner in which it was handled, transported, routed or responded to by emergency personnel upon MMA’s derailment,” said the company’s emailed response from an unidentified spokesperson.Ross stressed that the investigation continues, including on the structural integrity of the tank cars given the speed and severity of the derailment, and on the composition of the oil.”Investigators made it clear that even if the rules on labelling the oil had been followed, nothing would have significantly changed to lessen the extent of the disaster,” said Keith Stewart of Greenpeace Canada.”We need the federal government to focus more on protecting our communities and our environment, and less on keeping transportation costs low for oil companies.”
First Person: La Nina Threatens Texas’ Medina LakeFIRST PERSONRoy Gomez 5 hours ago NatureTexasView gallery | LAKE HILLS, Texas — From our hillside home overlooking a parched Medina Lake, my wife and I fear that the present drought, now simmering into a fourth La Nina season, will devastate our hill country paradise.As one of the driest regions in the state, historic Medina Lake — created in 1912 — is down more than 85 feet and stands at 4.4 percent capacity. Once a popular resort, a new wasteland now makes for a sad postcard.It’s been down before. True. In this rustic community of almost 6,000 residents, optimistic neighbors are quick to point out that Medina Lake, a historically drought-prone area, has survived other famines for more than a century.View gallery.”Tiki Island
Granted.Eventual rains do restore our lake and life in the rolling hills of south central Texas continues: Water irrigates blacktop farmlands. Texans enjoy an aquatic playground, and, since about 1999, Medina Lake Dam supplies water to nearby thirsting San Antonio.But times are changing.In fact, it’s the reason we worry, as global warming forecasts harder times. According to Texas State Climatologist John Nielsen-Gammon, a steady rise in temperatures and drier seasons may well become our new norm.Say it ain’t so!View gallery.”Westside of Medina LakeWe love our lake.Sadly, the mounting evidence regarding climactic change is becoming more difficult to deny. In „The 2011 Drought,” Nielsen-Gammon presents alarming data:- Since 2000, global weather patterns make Texas more susceptible to drought.- Summer temperatures for 2011 averaged 2 degrees Fahrenheit over state record.- The 2011 drought is the most intense one-year famine since about 1895.View gallery.”Medina Lake basin unseen since last drought 1956.We’re concerned.As Medina Lake vanishes, so too its quaint towns of Mico and Lake Hills. At times, in fact — during a high noon, under a blaring sun — in the shimmering waves of a desert-like heat the signs of exodus conjure ominous images of ghost towns.It’s happening.Like some of our neighbors, my wife and I consider moving. For sale: Beautiful lakeside home nestled in panoramic country charm just minutes from San Antonio. Cheap. BYOL.But we remain.View gallery.”My favorite Lake Hills restaurant, Adolph’s, now close.We hope.Specifically, we pray that La Nina stays away. As the source of climate extremes across the Southwest, La Nina means drier, hotter temperatures and other factors that exacerbate drought.Climatologists agree that La Nina typically runs nine to 12 months, occasionally lasting two years. But as we slip into our fourth year of drought — knowing we desperately need rain — the latest predictions by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration stun the spirit.The forecast: scorching to partly hellish.
Air quality index of Europe’s major cities September 11: Prague ‘very good’20 hours ago Europe
Below is information on the current background air quality in some of Europe’s major cities based on data taken from http://www.airqualitynow.eu and recorded at 08:00 am GMT September 11.
||Very good |
|Oslo||Very good |
|Prague||Very good |
|London||Very good |
|Madrid||Very good |
|Zurich||Very good |
|Very low ‘Very good’||0/25|
|Very high ‘Very poor’||>100|
The above data was collected from http://www.airqualitynow.eu, an interactive webservice designed to display and compare air quality and developed as part of the European Union’s ‘Common Information To European Air’ (CITEAIR) project.The data is taken from the ‘general background air quality index’ and represents the minimum level of air quality experienced by a citizen in each of the above cities, the data represents an hourly index and is subject to change throughout the day.The indices have five levels from ‘Very low’ to ‘Very high’ and are based upon the quantity of three major pollutants, PM10, NO2 and O3, and where data is available, will also take into account pollutants CO, PM2.5 and SO2. These pollutants are of major concern throughout Europe due to their various detrimental effects on health.Particulate Matter (PM10) particles are small enough to penetrate deep into a person’s lungs and as such pose a significant health risk, these particles are most commonly attributed to road traffic emissions and in particular diesel vehicles. NO2 refers to nitrogen dioxide and is detrimental to the bronchial system. Ground level Ozone (03) is, unlike other pollutants listed above, not emitted directly into the atmosphere but rather is a secondary pollutant formed by reaction between Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2), hydrocarbons and sunlight.For more information on the index calculation see: http://goo.gl/jlbfs
NASA launches drones from Va. to study stormsView galleryBROCK VERGAKIS 18 hours ago NatureTropical cyclone ATLANTIC, Va. (AP) — NASA scientists are using former military surveillance drones to help them understand more about how tropical storms intensify, which they say could ultimately save lives by improving forecast models that predict a hurricane’s strength.The unmanned Global Hawk aircraft were designed to perform high-altitude, long-endurance reconnaissance and intelligence missions for the Air Force. Two of the original Global Hawks built in the developmental process for the military have found new life as part of NASA’s research mission, studying storms that form over the Atlantic Ocean. NASA planned to launch one of the drones from its Wallops Flight Facility on Wednesday to study Tropical Storm Gabrielle, which re-formed in the Atlantic on Tuesday.”The biggest scientific question we’re trying to attack is why do some hurricanes intensify very rapidly and why do others not intensify at all? In the last 20 years, we’ve made terrific progress in forecasting where hurricane tracks will go,” said Paul Newman, deputy project scientist for the research mission. „But we’ve made almost no progress in the past 20 years in forecasting intensity.”More accurately predicting a storm’s intensity would help government officials and coastal residents decide whether an evacuation is needed, as well as avoid developing a false sense of security among residents who frequently cite failed storm expectations as a reason not to leave their homes when warned to do so.There are two questions on which NASA scientists primarily want the drone research to focus. One is what role thunderstorms within a hurricane play in its intensification. Researchers aren’t sure if the thunderstorms are a driver of storm intensity or a symptom of it.The other is what role the Saharan Air Layer plays in the tropical storm development. The Saharan Air Layer is a dry, hot, dusty layer of air from Africa. Scientists have been at odds with each other over whether it helps hurricanes strengthen or does the opposite. One school of thought is that the Saharan Air Layer provides energy for storms to grow, while others have suggested it is a negative influence on storm growth because of the effect the dry air has on wet storms.”There’s a bit of a debate in terms of how important it is, one way or the other,” said Scott Braun, a research meteorologist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., who is the drone project’s principal investigator.This is the second year NASA has launched Global Hawks from the Eastern Shore of Virginia, a strategic location that allows drones to spend plenty of time studying storms shortly after they form off the coast of Africa or as they approach the Caribbean Sea or Gulf of Mexico.View gallery.”CORRECTS DAY OF THE WEEK – NASA’s Global Hawk 872 Takes off for HS3 Science Flight #5 on Tuesday Sep …This year’s mission will end later this month, and the third and final year of the project’s flights will start again next August. NASA officials hope three years of flights will give them enough data to begin answering their questions.The drones are considered advantageous over manned aircraft because they can fly for much longer periods of time than traditional research aircraft and at much greater altitudes. Global Hawks can spend up to 28 hours in the air at a time and reach altitudes up to 12.3 miles, or roughly twice that of a typical commercial airliner.By comparison, specially equipped P-3 Hurricane Hunter aircraft that fly directly into a storm typically do so at low altitudes of 1,000 to 10,000 feet. Researchers say having a broad overview of a storm can help them understand things such as whether air moving away from a storm helps it intensify.”As a Hurricane Hunter goes through a storm, they get very detailed information,” Newman said. „Imagine that this (Global Hawk) will do kind of a cat scan of a hurricane, but Hurricane Hunters go in and it’s like you’re using a fine scalpel to look at the details of the patient, if you will.”___NASA Hurricane and Severe Storm Sentinel http://espo.nasa.gov/missions/hs3/___Brock Vergakis can be reached at www.twitter.com/BrockVergakis
Hurricane Central Gulf of Mexico Tropical Threat to the U.S.? Chris Dolce Published: Sep 11, 2013, 11:05 AM EDT weather.com
Watching HumbertoAutoplayWatching HumbertoWill Climate Change Weaken Hurricanes?What You Need When Disaster Hits For the last few days, we’ve been tracking an area of disturbed weather, designated Invest 93-L by the National Hurricane Center, from the northwest Caribbean to its current location over Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula.We expect this broad area of low pressure to now move into the far southwest Gulf of Mexico by Thursday.