WRAL WeatherCenter Blog

NC State researchers: 2013 to have active hurricane season

Posted April 18, 2013

Top researchers at N.C. State have concluded that the Atlantic Basin, which includes the Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea, and the Gulf of Mexico, is bound to have an active hurricane season.

The data below is what researchers Dr. Lian Xie, Dr. Montserrat Fuentes, Dr. Dorit Hammerling and Bin Liu have found after extensive research involving both climatic and statistical indices.

 
 

ENTIRE ATLANTIC BASIN

 PREDICTEDAVERAGE
NAMED STORMS13-1710.8
HURRICANES7-106.3
MAJOR HURRICANES3-62.7


CARIBBEAN SEA

 PREDICTEDAVERAGE
NAMED STORMS3-62.6
HURRICANES2-31.4
MAJOR HURRICANES1-20.7


GULF OF MEXICO

 PREDICTEDAVERAGE
NAMED STORMS3-53.1
HURRICANES1-21.6
MAJOR HURRICANES0-10.7


With hurricane season (June 1-Nov. 30) approaching, top researchers from top meteorological universities are coming out with their 2013 tropical outlooks. Different researchers have different methodologies as to how they develop their forecasts and statistical models.

What Dr. Lian Xie’s team has discovered over the past 12 years is that, by using the “Lasso methodology,” they’ve been able to come up with fairly accurate predictions regarding the tropical season in the Atlantic Basin (which includes the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico). Lasso methodology allows for variable selection when correlation occurs among prediction models.

By splitting up climatic models for different regions and different categories of storms, it’s advantageous because it’s easy to interpret. Examples of climatic models used by Dr. Xie’s team include the Atlantic Meridional Mode, Atlantic Multi-Decadal Oscillation, both the Tropical North and Tropical South Atlantic models, among many, many others.

The models used help to show past years of hurricane position and intensity, along with sea-surface temperatures and past weather patterns. By also using re-forecasting analysis, the research time is able to evaluate the prediction accuracy for different regions when using the Lasso methodology.

What they found is that prediction skill is best in the North Atlantic Basin, intermediate in the Caribbean Sea, and least effective in the Gulf of Mexico. Lastly, by using a 95 percent confidence interval, the research team has effectively found a range for the number of certain storms to affect the Atlantic Basin.

Comments

This story is closed for comments. Comments on WRAL.com news stories are accepted and moderated between the hours of 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Oldest First
View all