This week, several CIMMSE collaborators travelled to Huntsville, Alabama, for the first VORTEX-SE Workshop. The Verification of the Origins of Rotation in Tornadoes EXperiment-Southeast (VORTEX-SE) is a research program to understand how environmental factors characteristic of the southeastern United States affect the formation, intensity, structure, and path of tornadoes in this region. VORTEX-SE will also determine the best methods for communicating forecast uncertainty related to these events to the public, and evaluate public response. In many ways, VORTEX-SE represents a new approach to tornado research in general. The goal of the workshop is to produce a road-map showing specific research projects in the physical and social sciences that could be undertaken in the next few years, as well as the mechanisms for transferring knowledge to operations and applications.
Later this spring in March and April 2016, the first field observing campaign of VORTEX-SE will be held. The current concept is to operate during 4-5 periods of several days each, observing the growth of instability and shear in the atmosphere and the eventual thunderstorm activity, with any associated tornadoes, accompanying the passage of large-scale weather systems. The focus in this campaign will be on the boundary layer evolution during these events.
You can learn more about the VORTEX Southeast Project including topics & impacts, supported research, and the schedule of events at…