12.307 | Spring 2009 | Undergraduate

# Weather and Climate Laboratory

Projects

## Project 1: Mass and Wind

The purpose of this project is to study, using meteorological observations and laboratory experiments, the relation between the wind field and the mass field in a rotating system. In part I we explore the relationship in laboratory experiments; in part II atmospheric observations of intense cyclones and hurricanes are used.

Project Description (PDF)

### Tank Experiments

- Detailed description of the radial inflow tank experiment, together with associated theory. (PDF)

- View recordings of the Balanced Vortex Experiment at the Weather in a Tank Web site

- Look at the following experiment on Ekman Layers to visualize the impact of surface friction on the balance of forces.

- Notes on relevant theory: Lecture Notes from Course 12.003 (Physics of Atmospheres and Oceans) - Chapter 6 — The equations of fluid motion (PDF - 1.2 MB)

### Atmospheric Data

#### Hurricane Case Studies

Hurricane Katrina (Aug'05): [NASA-EO](http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/NaturalHazards/view.php?id=15399
), NCDC
Super-typhoon Ioke (Sept'06): [NASA-EO](http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=6914
)
Hurricane Dean (Aug 07): NCDC, [NASA-EO](http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/NaturalHazards/view.php?id=18889

Hurricane Bertha (Jul 08): [NASA-EO](http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/NaturalHazards/view.php?id=20209
)

Surface winds from scatterometer imagery

Choose an hurricane case from the Scatterometer Imagery of Historical Storms and:
1. Plot the surface winds at different times along the path of the hurricane.
2. Choose a specific time and download the wind data to compute the Rossby number in function of radius - See Instructions
3. Discuss how the hurricane data compare to the radial inflow experiment.

#### Upper Air Analyses and Geostrophic/ageostrophic Flow

Read here for notes on geostrophic balance and on hydrostatic balance. (PDF 1) (PDF 2)

Note

GDPLOT should be used to plot the height and wind from a regional analysis over the US.

Use GDPLOT_surf to plot the surface analyzed wind and pressure.

## Course Info

Spring 2009
##### Learning Resource Types
Projects
Activity Assignments