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NOAA Seeks Answers to Great Lakes Water Level Changes

Understanding causes helps water managers, planners and overall economy

While people along our nation’s coast experience rising sea levels, residents along the Great Lakes – the Earth’s largest lake system – are adapting to the opposite problem: chronic low water levels and a receding shoreline.

In a perspective now running in Science magazine, Drew Gronewold, a hydrologist at NOAA’s Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory, says “the record low water levels in Lake Michigan-Huron in the winter of 2012 to 2013 raise important questions about the driving forces behind water level fluctuations and how water resource management planning decisions can be improved.” 

Mapping climate change in the oceans

NOAA Research and NOAA Fisheries collaborate on new method to assess fish vulnerability to climate change

An interview with Mike Alexander, research meteorologist at NOAA’s Earth System Research Lab in Boulder, Colorado, about a new web portal that maps climate change effects in oceans. The new web portal is helping NOAA Fisheries Service with its new process to assess how vulnerable fish stocks are to climate change.

NOAA’s Upcoming Weather Forecast Model Zeros In Earlier on Severe Weather

Research behind the High-Resolution Rapid Refresh weather forecast model

Later this year, NOAA’s National Weather Service will usher into daily operations a sophisticated model called the High-Resolution Rapid Refresh, or HRRR, that will update forecasts hourly over the entire lower 48 United States at extremely sharp resolution using the latest observations from a network of ground and satellite-based sensors, radars and aircraft.

The HRRR provides forecast information at a resolution four times finer than what is currently used in hourly updated NOAA models.  This improvement in resolution from 13 to three kilometers is like giving forecasters an aerial photograph in which each pixel represents a neighborhood instead of a city.

NOAA flies through atmospheric rivers off California coast

Researchers study evolution and structure of moisture-bearing rivers in air

Scientists aboard the NOAA Gulfstream IV aircraft are flying over the Pacific Ocean off the U.S. West Coast this week to measure air pressure, temperature, humidity, wind speed and direction to help better understand atmospheric rivers - narrow conveyor belts of water vapor that can bring beneficial water supply and snowpack as well as create dangerous floods.

NOAA launches research on next generation of high performance weather, climate models

NOAA collaborates with U.S. Navy, other public and private partners to create faster, lower-cost models

NOAA and the U.S. Navy are teaming up with academic and other government scientists to design the next generation of powerful supercomputer models to predict weather, ocean conditions and regional climate change.

 

Four teams of scientists are beginning projects this month to rewrite computer models that will create faster, lower-cost, better integrated models.  These new models will take advantage of new supercomputers that use more energy efficient/lower-cost processors such as those originally developed for the video gaming industry.

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Popular Research News

When smoke is in the air, all eyes turn to this NOAA weather model

When smoke is in the air, all eyes turn to this NOAA weather model Read more

NOAA's HRRR-Smoke model may still be designated as experimental, but when wildfires are burning, many count on it for smoke forecasts.

NOAA unveils 10-year roadmap for tackling ocean, Great Lakes acidification

Arctic melt season puts focus on sea ice forecasts

Arctic melt season puts focus on sea ice forecasts Read more

Improving Arctic sea ice forecasts is a high priority for NOAA, as indigenous communities, fisheries, ecotourism, oil and gas industries, shipping concerns, wildlife managers and scientists need better information in a region that is rapidly shifting from a reliable frozen ice cap to an open-water ocean. Check out an animation of this summer's Arctic snow and ice melt.

 

Aviation is responsible for 3.5 percent of climate change, study finds

Aviation is responsible for 3.5 percent of climate change, study finds Read more

The study evaluated all of the aviation industry’s contributing factors to climate change, including emissions of carbon dioxide and nitrogen oxide, and the effect of contrails and contrail cirrus – short-lived clouds created in jet engine exhaust plumes at aircraft cruise altitudes that reflect sunlight during the day and trap heat trying to escape at night. 

Ocean gliders head to sea to improve hurricane forecasts

Ocean gliders head to sea to improve hurricane forecasts Read more

 

NOAA’s hurricane gliders are heading to sea this week off the coasts of Puerto Rico, the Gulf of Mexico and the eastern U.S. to collect data that scientists will use to improve the accuracy of hurricane forecast models. 

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Oceanic and Atmospheric Research (OAR) - or "NOAA Research" - provides the research foundation for understanding the complex systems that support our planet. Working in partnership with other organizational units of the NOAA, a bureau of the Department of Commerce, NOAA Research enables better forecasts, earlier warnings for natural disasters, and a greater understanding of the Earth. Our role is to provide unbiased science to better manage the environment, nationally, and globally.

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