Cyclone Center News and Updates

Hello Classifiers and Friends!  There have been a number of recent developments in Cyclone Center world in recent weeks.  Have a read and then head over to the Cyclone Center website and help us keep the classifying momentum!

New Cyclone Center Journal Article Accepted

CC scientist Dr. Ken Knapp from the U.S. National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI) in Asheville, NC is the lead author on a new paper just recently accepted into the journal Monthly Weather Review.  Titled “Identification of tropical cyclone ‘storm types’ using crowd sourcing”, the paper presents a new statistical method to investigate how well our classifiers are doing their work.  We can use this information to “weigh” classifications based on apparent skill level, which will give us better intensity data in the end.  Look for a blog post about the paper when it is released in the next couple of months.

Japan to Begin Flying Planes Through Typhoons

One of the reasons why Cyclone Center exists is because the vast majority of tropical cyclones are not measured directly, leading to confusion in the historical records about how strong the storms are.  In the western Pacific, typhoons (the name given to tropical cyclones there) have not been measured directly by aircraft since the U.S. ceased operations there in 1987.  Recognizing the importance of aircraft data for accurate typhoon analyses and forecasts, Japan has announced that they will begin regular operational missions into typhoons beginning this year.  Although it is only a 5-year mission as of now, Japan hopes to be able to continue the missions beyond 2020.  You can read the full article here.

Cyclone Center Crosses 555,000 classifications

We recently zoomed past a half million and are now steadily making our way to a million.  To finish the data collection in the next couple of years, we’ll need to increase our classification rates significantly.  To help, we’re also planning on reducing the available images, taking out those times where either nothing is happening or the image has been suitably classified by others.  In the end, we expect to need about 1.4 million classifications, so we’re about 40% of the way there.  We need more classifiers like you!

Image of the Month

This image from Gerard (2005) was recently posted in the forum from classifier “elevenvolt”, who wanted to know if this was an “Eye Storm” or not.  What do you think?  Reply in the comments below and we’ll post our thoughts later.

Gerard (2005) - Eye storm or not?

Is this an eye storm? If so, where is the eye? If not, what is it?

That’s it for now – hope to see you on Cyclone Center!

-Chris

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