Saturday, April 17, 2010

Frost Tonight, Symposium Wrap-up

I walked outside this morning and BOY it was downright chilly!  The wind today (15-20 mph) didn't help things out much because it blustery even in the afternoon, but the winds should calm overnight.  That, mixed with the little moisture from yesterday's rain and COLD temperatures, tonight's low of 32, we should have the perfect set-up for frost.  Technically a hard freeze is about 28 degrees for 4 hours, but regardless if frost forms on any fresh and susceptible vegetation, it could do some serious damage, so cover up any outdoor plants you can tonight, or bring in any potted plants.  The good news is that temperatures look to warm up this week into the upper 60's by the end of the week and stay dry for tomorrow, Sunday, and the beginning of the week.  Rain does look to arrive later in the week around Thursday night into Friday and linger into Saturday, but lets focus on the positive, dry for about the next 5 days and getting warmer....

Yesterday I filled in for Mike Terwilleger on the morning show and then took off, up to Columbus, for the 14th Annual Ohio State Severe Weather Symposium which had a lot of great speakers.  I walked in just as Mike Bettes from the Weather Channel started to talk about Vortex II, a HUGE undertaking on understanding how and why tornadoes form to better understand why some strong storms produce tornadoes, and why others do not.  It is a very hard question that no one knows the exact answer to, yet.  We know what ingredients  are needed to help form tornadoes, but some of the storms with the perfect set-up do not produce any tornadoes.  So the understanding of what key element is triggering the tornadoes will be crucial in saving lives and issuing warnings even earlier.   I got to hang out and talk to Mike Bettes quite a bit throughout the afternoon and it was a great time.  Another great speaker I always love to hear was Dan McCarthy.  He is a regular speaker and just like Mike Bettes, Mike Terwilleger, and myself, he is also a graduate from THE Ohio State University.  A lot of very interesting topics were discussed this year regarding tornado outbreaks, hail climatology, and also new developments in severe weather analysis with new radar products that will be coming out in the near future. 

The symposium always brings out current students and alumni of the Atmospheric Science program and it is always a great opportunity to catch up with former classmates.  It is always interesting to hear from old classmates, and former professors, on their research they have been doing, and while all that may be fun and dandy, it was also great to chat with former professors on their love and views of the Cincinnati Reds and other topics.  The tradition, I am sure, will continue and I look forward to next year's symposium.  Have a good one and cover up your plants tonight!!

Andrew Buck Michael

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