Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Rob Narrates a new video: New NASA Video Gives Hurricanes a Good 'HIWRAP'

I had the honor of narrating another cool, new science video about an instrument that peers into hurricanes. The video was produced by Ryan Fitzgibbons, one of the best video producers ever (just look at it). - and here's a story that goes with the video to explain what it is:

New NASA Video Gives Hurricanes a Good 'HIWRAP'    
   A new animation from NASA shows how a remarkable instrument called the HIWRAP looks into tropical cyclones at wind, rain and ice to analyze storm intensity.
    The HIWRAP is the High-Altitude Imaging Wind and Rain Airborne Profiler, a "conically scanning" Doppler radar, meaning it scans in a cone-shaped manner. Wind measurements are crucial for understanding and forecasting tropical storms since they are closely tied to the overall dynamics of the storm. The HIWRAP instrument is able to measure line-of-sight (along the radar beam) and because it scans in a cone beneath the aircraft, it gets two looks at most parts of the storm, allowing calculations of the 3-dimensional wind and rain fields. In the absence of rain, it can also measure ocean surface winds. HIWRAP while flying on board an aircraft is capable of examining storms down to a very small scale.
    "HIWRAP allows us to see how strong bursts of thunderstorms contribute to the intensification of the low-level wind field in hurricanes," said Research Meteorologist Scott Braun of NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland.
The 2 minute visualization shows how scans from the HIWRAP instrument are done in a cone-like shape over storms, measuring winds within heavy rain throughout.
    "What's interesting about the HIWRAP Doppler radar is that it's a dual-frequency and dual-beam radar," said Gerry Heymsfield, Cloud Radar Expert and Research Meteorologist from NASA Goddard. "That means it has two frequencies that measure at two different angles." The instrument scans in a cone shape toward the surface, with the peak of the cone at the HIWRAP radar on the aircraft. "As the plane flies over a particular target—say the eyewall of a storm— scanning it with a cone-shape provides views of the same region from different directions. That's what allows scientists to measure the three-dimensional winds and precipitation within the storm."
    The video shows that the HIWRAP sends out about 5,000 pulses a second to get an accurate read on precipitation particles, like rain or ice as the storm and the aircraft are both moving. The signals that bounce back reveal the type, size and distribution of rain or ice particles, as well as how fast the particles are moving. The speed of the particles can help determine the wind and circulation in a storm.
For more information about NASA's Hurricane research, visit:

Gift/Memorial Suggestions

Several of our friends have lost loved ones (human and pets) and we found that one of the best ways to honor their memory is to give to an animal charity.
What better way to recognize a life of love, than by giving another life a chance for love?
We donate to many animal rescues, but because we volunteer with
DC Weimaraner Rescue and Coast-to-Coast Dachshund Rescue, those are our 2 favorites.
Consider giving the chance of life to a dog or cat.

About us

We're two married guys who enjoy the simple things in life, especially our dogs. We volunteer for dog rescues, enjoy splitting dinners, exercising, blogging, helping friends and neighbors, ghost investigations, coffee and tea, Tudor history, weather, superheroes, comic books, mystery novels, traveling, 70s and 80s music, classic country, piano, gardening, writing books on ghosts and spirits, architecture, keeping a clean house, cooking simply, and keeping in shape. You'll find tidbits of all of these things on this blog and more.

Tom and Rob Thinking Hard!

Tom and Rob Thinking Hard!
Wondering what home project to do next