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The Dvorak Tropical Cyclone Intensity Estimation Technique: A Satellite-Based Method that Has Endured for over 30 Years

Christopher Velden
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Bruce Harper
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Frank Wells
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John L. Beven II
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Ray Zehr
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Timothy Olander
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Max Mayfield
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Charles “CHIP” Guard
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Mark Lander
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Roger Edson
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Lixion Avila
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Andrew Burton
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Mike Turk
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Akihiro Kikuchi
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Adam Christian
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Philippe Caroff
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Paul McCrone
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The history of meteorology has taught us that weather analysis and prediction usually advances by a series of small, progressive studies. Occasionally, however, a special body of work can accelerate this process. When that work pertains to high-impact weather events that can affect large populations, it is especially notable. In this paper we review the contributions by Vernon F. Dvorak, whose innovations using satellite observations of cloud patterns fundamentally enhanced the ability to monitor tropical cyclones on a global scale. We discuss how his original technique has progressed, and the ways in which new spaceborne instruments are being employed to complement Dvorak's original visions.

CIMSS, University of Wisconsin—Madison, Madison, Wisconsin

Systems Engineering Australia, Brisbane, Australia

Santa Rita, Guam

NOAA Tropical Prediction Center, Miami, Florida

NOAA/NESDIS/RAMM, Fort Collins, Colorado

NOAA/NWSFO, Tiyan, Guam

University of Guam, Mangilao, Guam

Bureau of Meteorology, Perth, Australia

NOAA/NESDIS Satellite Analysis Branch, Washington, D.C.

Meteo-France, RSMC-La Reunion, Reunion Island, France

RMSC-Tokyo Typhoon Center, Japan Meteorological Agency, Tokyo, Japan

Joint Typhoon Warning Center, Pearl Harbor, Hawaii

Air Force Weather Agency, Omaha, Nebraska

A supplement to this article is available online (DOI: 10.1175/BAMS-87-9-Velden)

CORRESPONDING AUTHOR: Christopher Velden, CIMSS, University of Wisconsin—Madison, 1225 W. Dayton St., Madison, Wl 53706. E-mail: chrisv@ssec.wisc.edu

The history of meteorology has taught us that weather analysis and prediction usually advances by a series of small, progressive studies. Occasionally, however, a special body of work can accelerate this process. When that work pertains to high-impact weather events that can affect large populations, it is especially notable. In this paper we review the contributions by Vernon F. Dvorak, whose innovations using satellite observations of cloud patterns fundamentally enhanced the ability to monitor tropical cyclones on a global scale. We discuss how his original technique has progressed, and the ways in which new spaceborne instruments are being employed to complement Dvorak's original visions.

CIMSS, University of Wisconsin—Madison, Madison, Wisconsin

Systems Engineering Australia, Brisbane, Australia

Santa Rita, Guam

NOAA Tropical Prediction Center, Miami, Florida

NOAA/NESDIS/RAMM, Fort Collins, Colorado

NOAA/NWSFO, Tiyan, Guam

University of Guam, Mangilao, Guam

Bureau of Meteorology, Perth, Australia

NOAA/NESDIS Satellite Analysis Branch, Washington, D.C.

Meteo-France, RSMC-La Reunion, Reunion Island, France

RMSC-Tokyo Typhoon Center, Japan Meteorological Agency, Tokyo, Japan

Joint Typhoon Warning Center, Pearl Harbor, Hawaii

Air Force Weather Agency, Omaha, Nebraska

A supplement to this article is available online (DOI: 10.1175/BAMS-87-9-Velden)

CORRESPONDING AUTHOR: Christopher Velden, CIMSS, University of Wisconsin—Madison, 1225 W. Dayton St., Madison, Wl 53706. E-mail: chrisv@ssec.wisc.edu
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