UGA Skidaway Institute of Oceanography assists in improving hurricane forecast models

Published: Sep. 6, 2021 at 9:53 AM EDT
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - Peak hurricane season is just around the corner and scientists at the University of Georgia Skidaway Institute of Oceanography are working with NOAA to improve hurricane forecasts.

The UGA Skidaway Institute deploys and maintains unmanned gliders that measures data such as water temperature and salinity.

NOAA operates “saildrones” which collect data along the sea surface along with atmospheric data.

These devices take sea surface and atmospheric measurements above the "gliders"
These devices take sea surface and atmospheric measurements above the "gliders"(NOAA)

These unmanned vehicles collect data from off the Georgia and South Carolina coast all the way down to the Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico.

In conjunction, the two autonomous vehicles assist in collecting data that is then ingested into databases around the world, improving atmospheric models used to forecast the intensity of hurricanes.

“This capacity to think about it, these measurements in the ocean and understanding that ocean atmosphere interaction in a forecast capability for hurricanes, that’s something powerful that we knew that we’re seizing on,” said Catherine Edwards Professor, Skidaway Institute of Oceanography, University of Georgia.

Scientists at the UGA Skidaway Institute are planning on deploying another glider this week.

These devices will stay offshore through the end of hurricane season.

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