Additional Information

VORTEX 2 will investigate tornadogenesis, tornado structure and the relationships between tornandos, their parent thunderstorms and the larger-scale environment by using an armada of ground-based, mobile measurement systems including the DOW's and EOL's MGAUS. The project is planned for Spring 2009.

VORTEX2 will be the largest and most ambitious attempt to explore tornadoes, their origins, their structure and evolution, and how to increase the accuracy and timeliness of tornado forecasts and warnings.

It is anticipated that approximately 30 vehicles and 50 scientists and students will participate in field activities.  Mobile and deployable instrumentation that is likely to be employed include:

  • Mobile radars:  DOW6, DOW7, Rapid-Scan DOW, SMART-Radar-1, SMART-RADAR-2, NOXP, UMASS-X, UMASS-W, CIRPAS [9 mobile radars total]
  • Deployable instrumentation:  Tornado-PODs (12)   Sticknets (24)    [36 platforms total]
  • Unmanned instrumented aerial system
  • MGAUS mobile ballooning facilities:  NSSL MGAUS (2), NCAR MGAUS (2)   [4 total]
  • Mobile mesonets:  6 dedicated, 3 deploying PODS   [9 vehicles total]

In addition an extensive array of fixed instrumentation based in Oklahoma will be integrated when severe weather systems cross that region.  These include:

  • Norman Phased Array Radar
  • CASA radar array
  • Oklahoma mesonet
  • KOUN dual-polarized WSR-88D

Other research efforts related to VORTEX2 include damage surveying, photogrammetry, mobile disdrometry, and

numerical simulation efforts. Information concerning the funding status of individual proposals should be directed to the specific investigators or NSF.

The VORTEX2 steering committee, who can answer many questions related to the goals and planning of VORTEX2, is:

Howie Bluestein:  University of Oklahoma

Don Burgess, Coop. Inst for Mesoscale Meteor. St., OU

David Dowell, National Center for Atmospheric Research

Paul Markowski, Pennsylvania State University

Yvette Richardson, Pennsylvania State University

Erik Rasmussen, Rasmussen Systems

Lou Wicker, NOAA

Joshua Wurman, Center for Severe Weather Research

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