Scientists, students, and applications users seeking on-the-fly visualizations of hurricane-related satellite and model data can now visualize and get access to the NCEP/CPC 4-km Global (60°N - 60°S) Merged IR Brightness Temperature Dataset, through the publicly open GSFC Earth Sciences Data and Information Services Center (GES DISC) Hurricane Data Analysis tool.
With a web browser and few mouse clicks, users can produce visualizations for all 8 years and 4.5 TB of Merged IR Brightness Temperature data and generate black and white IR imagery and animation without downloading any software and data, a priori. This is an important addition to the current collection of multi-sensor datasets already in the system, namely, Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) precipitation, TRMM Microwave Imager (TMI) sea surface temperature (SST), NASA's daily Quick Scatterometer (QuikSCAT) ocean surface wind, NCEP Reanalysis sea level pressure (SLP) and NCEP Reanalysis winds.
The NASA Goddard Hurricane Data Portal currently a working prototype, is intended to assist researchers to investigate key parameters for tropical cyclones, hurricanes and typhoons around the world prior to selecting and downloading the data of most interest. It also helps them to investigate other meteorological phenomena, such as, precipitation, monsoon events, mesoscale convective systems, etc. Current functions include area (latitude-longitude) and time series (area averaging) plots and their overlays. More capabilities and data will be added in the future.
The following are examples of Merged IR imagery generated using the Hurricane Data Analysis Tool:
1) A large scale image on August 31, 2008 at 23Z showing Hurricane Gustav, Tropical Storm Hanna and Tropical Storm Ike. (Click the image below to see it larger.)
2) An animation generated by this tool showing the 4km IR images every 30 minutes for 19 hours of Hurricane Ike on September 07, 2008. The animation shows Ike's well developed eye and rotational movement as it moves to the West/Northwest.
QuikSCAT ocean surface winds are provided by the Physical Oceanography Distributed Active Archive Center (PO.DAAC). TMI SST data are provided by Remote Sensing Systems. NCEP sea level pressure, zonal and meridional wind at 1000, 850, and 200 hPa level data are obtained from NCEP's Global Forecast System analysis.
All other data are resident at the NASA GES DISC.
Similar interactive access to other data available at the GES DISC, as well as online visualization and statistical analysis, is available via the operational Giovanni system.