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Analysis of GFDL Intensity Forecasting Performance for Gulf/Caribbean Major Hurricanes from 1998-2008

Title: Analysis of GFDL Intensity Forecasting Performance for Gulf/Caribbean Major Hurricanes from 1998-2008.
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Name(s): Hazelton, Andrew, author
Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Science
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Text
Issuance: serial
Date Issued: 2011
Physical Form: computer
online resource
Extent: 1 online resource
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: While both computer model and official track forecasts of Atlantic Basin hurricanes have improved significantly over the past several decades, forecasts of intensity continue to prove difficult. Even specialized hurricane models struggle with predicting intensity. This study analyzes the intensity errors of the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL) Hurricane Model for 19 major hurricanes over the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Sea from 1998 to 2008. Using the measure of skill relative to the Statistical Hurricane Intensity Forecast (SHIFOR), the GFDL forecasts generally improved throughout most of the 11-year period, although there were some exceptions to this increase in skill. Comparing the GFDL to the Statistical Hurricane Intensity Prediction Scheme (SHIPS), it is found that the GFDL was slightly outperformed by SHIPS on most of the forecast categories and times. It seems that there is a correlation between higher intensity storms and higher errors (R = 0.53), and there is also a clear relationship between large negative errors and rapid intensification (R = 0.62). This relationship is explored for some of the ―higher-error‖ cases by comparing the GFDL forecast intensity progression with the actual intensity change. Hurricanes Dean (2007) and Felix (2007) are also analyzed in more detail, since both of these storms were exceptions to the general trend in increased skill from 2000-2008. It is hoped that this and further analysis will illuminate reasons for the model's difficulty with the intensity forecasts, and provide a basis for improving model forecasts and official forecasts of tropical cyclone intensity.
Identifier: FSU_migr_uhm-0014 (IID)
Keywords: Major hurricanes, Computer models, Rapid intensification
Submitted Note: A Thesis submitted to the Department of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Science in partial fulfillment of the requirements the degree of Honors in the Major.
Degree Awarded: Spring Semester, 2011.
Date of Defense: April 1, 2011.
Subject(s): Earth sciences
Atmospheric sciences
Meteorology
Oceanography
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/fsu/fd/FSU_migr_uhm-0014
Restrictions on Access: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/
Owner Institution: FSU
Is Part of Series: Honors Theses.

Choose the citation style.
Hazelton, A. (2011). Analysis of GFDL Intensity Forecasting Performance for Gulf/Caribbean Major Hurricanes from 1998-2008. Retrieved from http://purl.flvc.org/fsu/fd/FSU_migr_uhm-0014