WorldWinds, Inc. announces a new product to drive finite element surge and wave models: StormWindsTM – wind and pressure analyses for hurricanes or other historical storms.  Wind direction, speed, and pressure are produced on a user defined grid in NWS 12 format.  Temporal and spatial resolutions are user specific.

At the core of StormWindsTM are multiple sources of objective analyses.  The tropical cyclone analyses integrate surface observations at sea, on land, from satellites, and Hurricane Hunter reconnaissance; adjusting each source for observing height, exposure, and averaging time.  The analyses also assign confidence levels based upon past performance of observation platforms and conditions.  Objective analysis wind values are produced as 1-minute sustained vector components at a 10-m elevation.  Although the objective analyses are available at 3-hour intervals, StormWindsTM produces interpolated results every 15 minutes.  Additionally, StormWindsTM produces marine exposure wind analysis, allowing the user to apply land roughness-derived drag at unstructured mesh spatial resolutions as the storm approaches the coast.

StormWindsTM integrates mesoscale analyses from the National Weather Service, and other sources, to extend the tropical cyclone analysis wind and pressure grids.  These multiple sources are blended into a single 2000 km by 2000 km domain covering the storm’s track throughout its life cycle; sources are weighted by location relative to the cyclone’s center and biases.  After landfall, StormWindsTM blends the final NOAA Hurricane Research Division tropical cyclone analysis product and best track file, and mesoscale winds to produce wind and pressure fields for an additional 48 hours.


Hurricane Ike’s core winds at 10:30 UTC, 12 September 2008:
NOAA H*Wind analysis (left) compared to StormWindsTM (right).