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Re: "It's Time for a 21st Century Hurricane Scale" - I so agree with him on this !

Posted by Chris in Tampa on 9/14/2017, 3:31 pm

A problem that still exists with the wind scale is the term "major hurricane". The Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale has the word "wind" in there now, but we don't call it a "major wind hurricane" or "major hurricane in terms of wind". Ike in 2008 was 110mph, a strong category two hurricane, at landfall. It was not a major hurricane in terms of wind, but it did do major damage due to surge.

Another view:

I think aspects of the Integrated Kinetic Energy scale (IKE, not related to Ike in 2008, though Ike did have a high IKE) and Surge Destructive Potential (SDP) should be something that is also released by the National Hurricane Center. The information was available in real time, but then it was sold to a private company, which was an insane deal. They now charge for it. (more about that discussion here at CaneTalk)

The wind scale is easy. They will never get rid of it or change it any further. It's too simple for people to understand. A certain sustained wind speed equates to a certain category. IKE and SDP however tell you very important things about the overall destructive power of the storm. You can give people a number, but it's hard for people to understand what it means. But it's still good for meteorologists to have the number to use it to describe how a storm compares to other storms in a measured way. If people widely knew Sandy, a storm with category one winds (80mph at landfall as a post tropical cyclone) had a SDP of 5.8 out of 6.0 at one time (not sure what it was at landfall, it was 5.4 in the afternoon before landfall in evening), I think people would have taken it even more seriously along the coast.

I like the Surge/waves and wind scales in the IKE images that used to be created. It's easier to understand than just terajoules.

Those IKE images use detailed information that I suppose we can't easily get. You can plug in wind fields into the IKE calculator that you get from NHC advisories or best track data:
But I don't think you're getting the detail those images used to provide. And that only has SDP. Not sure about wind destructive potential. One of these days I might use best track wind field data to generate an SDP in the best track system at HurricaneCity. It would not be as detailed as NOAA used to provide, or a private company now, and I would have to note that, but it would be something.


In this thread:

"It's Time for a 21st Century Hurricane Scale" - I so agree with him on this ! - cypresstx, 9/14/2017, 2:29 am

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