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Surface Meteorological Observations in Severe Thunderstorms. Part II: Field Experiments with TOTO

Howard B. BluesteinSchool of Meteorology, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK 73019

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Abstract

The TOTO (Totable Tornado Observatory) device was field tested in the Southern Plains by a severe-storm intercept team from the University of Oklahoma from late May through early June 1981. The results from two intercept missions and a gust-front intercomparison at the National Severe Storms laboratory are discussed. Measurements are presented of wind speed, wind direction, pressure and temperature made underneath a rotating wall cloud and within 1.5 km of two tornadoes. A damage survey and a Doppler-radar observed mesocyclone-signature track were used in conjunction with the TOTO data to obtain an estimate of the maximum wind speed inside one of the tornadoes.

Abstract

The TOTO (Totable Tornado Observatory) device was field tested in the Southern Plains by a severe-storm intercept team from the University of Oklahoma from late May through early June 1981. The results from two intercept missions and a gust-front intercomparison at the National Severe Storms laboratory are discussed. Measurements are presented of wind speed, wind direction, pressure and temperature made underneath a rotating wall cloud and within 1.5 km of two tornadoes. A damage survey and a Doppler-radar observed mesocyclone-signature track were used in conjunction with the TOTO data to obtain an estimate of the maximum wind speed inside one of the tornadoes.

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