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  • Author or Editor: Bradford S. Barrett x
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Bradford S. Barrett
and
John E. Woods

To engage students in active learning, the Oceanography Department at the United States Naval Academy developed a new, not-for-course-credit training activity for its students, the Severe Weather InField Training (SWIFT). In SWIFT, 10 students and 2 faculty members traveled to the Great Plains and met with operational and research meteorologists, led daily weather discussions, made daily convective forecasts, and verified their convective forecasts by observing severe storms. Participation was solicited from sophomore- and junior-level students. SWIFT built on similar activities developed by other universities with its particular emphasis on assessing student learning and broadening awareness of both Department of Defense and civilian career opportunities in meteorology. Assessment outcomes from SWIFT indicate that students deepened their understanding of severe weather processes, were equipped to use observational and modeling data in real time, applied course content to real-world situations, became active participants in science inquiry, were introduced to a variety of meteorology career options, and increased their interest in pursuing a science-related career.

Full access
Vittorio A. Gensini
,
Bradford S. Barrett
,
John T. Allen
,
David Gold
, and
Paul Sirvatka

Abstract

Large-scale weather patterns favorable for tornado occurrence have been understood for many decades. Yet prediction of tornadoes, especially at extended lead periods of more than a few days, remains an arduous task, partly due to the space and time scales involved. Recent research has shown that tropical convection, sea surface temperatures, and the Earth-relative atmospheric angular momentum can induce jet stream configurations that may increase or decrease the probability of tornado frequency across the United States. Applying this recent theoretical work in practice, on 1 March 2015, the authors began the Extended-Range Tornado Activity Forecast (ERTAF) project, with the following goals: 1) to have a map room–style discussion of the anticipated atmospheric state in the 2–3-week lead window; 2) to predict categorical level of tornado activity in that lead window; and 3) to learn from the forecasts through experience by identifying strengths and weaknesses in the methods, as well as identifying any potential scientific knowledge gaps. Over the last five years, the authors have shown skill in predicting U.S. tornado activity two to three weeks in advance during boreal spring. Unsurprisingly, skill is shown to be greater for forecasts spanning week 2 versus week 3. This manuscript documents these forecasting efforts, provides verification statistics, and shares the challenges and lessons learned from predicting tornado activity on the subseasonal time scale.

Free access
Vittorio A. Gensini
,
Bradford S. Barrett
,
John T. Allen
,
David Gold
, and
Paul Sirvatka
Full access
Annareli Morales
,
Maria J. Molina
,
Joseph E. Trujillo-Falcón
,
Kelly M. Nuñez Ocasio
,
Andrea L. Lang
,
Elisa Murillo
,
Carolina Bieri
,
Bradford S. Barrett
,
Lourdes B. Avilés
, and
Suzana J. Camargo

Abstract

In 2021, people of Hispanic and Latinx origin made up 6% of the atmospheric and Earth sciences workforce of the United States, yet they represent 20% of the population. Motivated by this disparity in Hispanic and Latinx representation in the atmospheric and Earth science workforce, this manuscript documents the lack of representation through existing limited demographic data. The analysis presents a clear gap in participation by Hispanic and Latinx people in academic settings, with a widening gap through each education and career stage. Several factors and challenges impacting the representation disparity include the lack of funding for and collaboration with Hispanic-serving institutions, limited opportunities due to immigration status, and limited support for international research collaborations. We highlight the need for actionable steps to address the lack of representation and provide targeted recommendations to federal funding agencies, educational institutions, faculty, and potential employers. While we wait for systemic cultural change from our scientific institutions, grassroots initiatives like those proudly led by the AMS Committee for Hispanic and Latinx Advancement will emerge to address the needs of the Hispanic and Latinx scientific and broader community. We briefly highlight some of those achievements. Lasting cultural change can only happen if our leaders are active allies in the creation of a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive future. Alongside our active allies we will continue to champion for change in our weather, water, and climate enterprise.

Open access
James D. Doyle
,
Jonathan R. Moskaitis
,
Joel W. Feldmeier
,
Ronald J. Ferek
,
Mark Beaubien
,
Michael M. Bell
,
Daniel L. Cecil
,
Robert L. Creasey
,
Patrick Duran
,
Russell L. Elsberry
,
William A. Komaromi
,
John Molinari
,
David R. Ryglicki
,
Daniel P. Stern
,
Christopher S. Velden
,
Xuguang Wang
,
Todd Allen
,
Bradford S. Barrett
,
Peter G. Black
,
Jason P. Dunion
,
Kerry A. Emanuel
,
Patrick A. Harr
,
Lee Harrison
,
Eric A. Hendricks
,
Derrick Herndon
,
William Q. Jeffries
,
Sharanya J. Majumdar
,
James A. Moore
,
Zhaoxia Pu
,
Robert F. Rogers
,
Elizabeth R. Sanabia
,
Gregory J. Tripoli
, and
Da-Lin Zhang

Abstract

Tropical cyclone (TC) outflow and its relationship to TC intensity change and structure were investigated in the Office of Naval Research Tropical Cyclone Intensity (TCI) field program during 2015 using dropsondes deployed from the innovative new High-Definition Sounding System (HDSS) and remotely sensed observations from the Hurricane Imaging Radiometer (HIRAD), both on board the NASA WB-57 that flew in the lower stratosphere. Three noteworthy hurricanes were intensively observed with unprecedented horizontal resolution: Joaquin in the Atlantic and Marty and Patricia in the eastern North Pacific. Nearly 800 dropsondes were deployed from the WB-57 flight level of ∼60,000 ft (∼18 km), recording atmospheric conditions from the lower stratosphere to the surface, while HIRAD measured the surface winds in a 50-km-wide swath with a horizontal resolution of 2 km. Dropsonde transects with 4–10-km spacing through the inner cores of Hurricanes Patricia, Joaquin, and Marty depict the large horizontal and vertical gradients in winds and thermodynamic properties. An innovative technique utilizing GPS positions of the HDSS reveals the vortex tilt in detail not possible before. In four TCI flights over Joaquin, systematic measurements of a major hurricane’s outflow layer were made at high spatial resolution for the first time. Dropsondes deployed at 4-km intervals as the WB-57 flew over the center of Hurricane Patricia reveal in unprecedented detail the inner-core structure and upper-tropospheric outflow associated with this historic hurricane. Analyses and numerical modeling studies are in progress to understand and predict the complex factors that influenced Joaquin’s and Patricia’s unusual intensity changes.

Open access