Research News

Beyond the Weatherman: How You Can Track Storms like Harvey in Real Time

Harvey grew from a tropical storm to a Category 4 hurricane in three days. Because a storm can blow up so suddenly, access to the best real-time data available can be vital.

It goes without saying that you should check the analyses and forecasts at the National Hurricane Center, but for those who want even more data, ECO has put together three of the main resources we check when tracking storms in real-time:

1) Wundermap from the Weather Underground is one of the best tools available for tailoring how you look at weather. From space satellites to weather stations and buoys, if you want to get local, you can’t go wrong by bookmarking this page.

2) Another site to frequent is Today’s Weather at Climate Reanalyzer. Their global weather maps are generated from the same model underlying U.S. NOAA/NWS weather forecasting. It is particularly good to get a global view of what is going on. The model is run four times daily to produce 16-day forecasts. We especially like the sea surface temperature anomaly feature on this site.

3) The final site we want to share is Cameron Beccario’s amazing Using data global forecast data from the National Weather Service, this interactive map updates every three hours, showing near-current weather patterns worldwide. It combines local, regional and global data, allowing users to spin the map, zoom in, and change the parameters to overlay all kinds of relevant data, from wind speeds at specified heights to ocean currents, relative humidity to particulates, and much more. Helpful hint: Click the word earth to pull up the interactive menu. A guide to the filters mean can be viewed here.


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