Weather

NASA’s Global Precipitation Measurement Project

February 27th, 2014 at 8:24 am by under Weather

Hopefully, we will soon be measuring precipitation from…. space??  Here is a brief overview of the GPM Project:

 

 

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Mission Overview

Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) is an international satellite mission to provide next-

generation observations of rain and snow worldwide every three hours. NASA and the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) will launch the GPM Core Observatory satellite carrying advanced instruments that will set a new standard for prec

The GPM mission will help advance our understanding of Earth’s water and energy cycles, improve the forecasting of extreme events that cause natural disasters, and extend current capabilities of using satellite precipitation information to directly benefit society.ipitation measurements from space. The data they provide will be used to unify precipitation measurements made by an international network of partner satellites to quantify when, where, and how much it rains or snows around the world.

gpm

GPM Science and Applications

Water is fundamental to life on Earth. Knowing where and how much rain and snow falls globally is vital to understanding how weather and climate impact both our environment and Earth’s water and energy cycles, including effects on agriculture, fresh water availability, and responses to natural disasters. Since rainfall and snowfall vary greatly from place to place and over time, satellites can provide more uniform observations of rain and snow around the globe than ground instruments, especially in areas where surface measurements are difficult. GPM’s next-generation global precipitation data will lead to scientific advances and societal benefits in the following areas:

  • Improved knowledge of the Earth’s water cycle and its link to climate change
  • New insights into precipitation microphysics, storm structures and large-scale atmospheric processes
  • Extended capabilities in monitoring and predicting hurricanes and other extreme weather events
  • Improved forecasting abilities for natural hazards, including floods, droughts and landslides.
  • Enhanced numerical prediction skills for weather and climate
  • Better agricultural crop forecasting and monitoring of freshwater resources

This is just a brief overview.  For an in depth look at ALL of the details surrounding the GPM Project go to:

http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/GPM/main/index.html#.Uw9KHuNdUgc


Wednesday rainfall totals

February 26th, 2014 at 8:31 pm by under Weather
Austin officially received .11" at Camp Mabry and .27" at ABIA, though parts
of Travis County saw up to .71" in heavier, early morning downpours. 

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE AUSTIN/SAN ANTONIO TX
643 PM CST WED FEB 26 2014

...LATEST 24 HOUR RAINFALL REPORTS ENDING 6 PM CST...

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Cold front arrives… Much colder, rainy Wednesday

February 25th, 2014 at 2:45 pm by under Weather

See the Special Weather Statement below regarding the possibility of freezing precipitation in our extreme western and northern Hill Country counties.


A strong cold front will move through nearly all of South Central Texas by 9 pm this evening. A few strong thunderstorms could develop near the front as it moves through the Rio Grande Plains, but most areas are expected to see light to moderate showers. Winds in the early evening may only be 10 to 15 mph in the wake of the front, but the winds will increase to 15 to 25 mph with higher gusts to 35 mph late tonight. The rain, wind, and rapidly falling temperatures will bring wind chill indices down into the 20s and 30s late tonight. Overnight rainfall totals should be mostly around 1/10 inch or less, but the chance of rain will continue into Wednesday.
(National Weather Service)
——————————————

Cold Canadian air will continue to spill south across Texas Wednesday with a cold light rain expected for much of the day. A few moderate showers are expected, so most daytime rainfall totals are expected to be between 1/10 and 1/4 inch. With north winds continuing at 20 to 25 mph, wind chill indices are expected to dip into the 20s and 30s.
—————————————
Note–the following graphic applies to west-central Texas, including the extreme western Hill Country.

A strong cold front crossing the area tomorrow, will usher in MUCH COLDER AIR for Wednesday. An upper-level disturbance will cross the area during the day. A mix of rain and sleet is possible across most of the area, with mainly rain expected near Interstate 10. Please STAY UPDATED with the latest forecasts.
——————————-
SPECIAL WEATHER STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SAN ANGELO TX
252 PM CST TUE FEB 25 2014

FISHER-NOLAN-STERLING-COKE-RUNNELS-IRION-TOM GREEN-CONCHO-
CROCKETT-SCHLEICHER-SUTTON-HASKELL-THROCKMORTON-JONES-SHACKELFORD-
TAYLOR-CALLAHAN-COLEMAN-BROWN-MCCULLOCH-SAN SABA-MENARD-KIMBLE-
MASON-
INCLUDING THE CITIES OF...ROTAN...ROBY...SWEETWATER...
STERLING CITY...ROBERT LEE...BRONTE...BALLINGER...WINTERS...
MERTZON...SAN ANGELO...EDEN...OZONA...ELDORADO...SONORA...
HASKELL...THROCKMORTON...WOODSON...STAMFORD...ANSON...HAMLIN...
ALBANY...ABILENE...CLYDE...BAIRD...CROSS PLAINS...COLEMAN...
BROWNWOOD...BRADY...SAN SABA...MENARD...JUNCTION...MASON
252 PM CST TUE FEB 25 2014

...WINTRY PRECIPITATION POSSIBLE LATE TONIGHT AND WEDNESDAY...

  * A LIGHT WINTRY MIX OF PRECIPITATION MAY DEVELOP LATE TONIGHT
    AND WEDNESDAY...MAINLY NORTH OF A BIG LAKE TO SAN SABA LINE.

  * LITTLE OR NO ACCUMULATION OF SLEET OR ICE IS EXPECTED AT THIS
    TIME. HOWEVER...ISOLATED SLIPPERY SPOTS COULD DEVELOP ON
    ELEVATED SURFACES SUCH AS BRIDGES AND OVERPASSES.

  * HAZARDOUS DRIVING CONDITIONS MAY BRIEFLY DEVELOP. IT ONLY
    TAKES A GLAZE OF ICE TO CAUSE DANGEROUS DRIVING CONDITIONS.

  * TEMPERATURES WILL STRUGGLE TO REACH THE MID 30S TO NEAR 40
    DEGREES WEDNESDAY. WIND CHILL VALUES WILL DIP INTO THE TEENS
    WEDNESDAY MORNING NORTH OF THE INTERSTATE 20 CORRIDOR.

Reminder: Free storm spotter training Saturday

February 21st, 2014 at 12:15 pm by under Weather

http://blogs.kxan.com/files/2014/02/skywarn.gif

SKYWARN training is a great way to learn more about weather, and also help the media and National Weather Service in times of severe weather. Here’s the information on a FREE, PUBLIC meeting this weekend in Austin:

Saturday / 22 February 2014

815am – 330pm

23rd Annual Lou Withrow SkyWarn Training Session (Basic and Advanced Training)
ACC Riverside Campus, Building G, Room 8100
1020 Grove Boulevard, Austin, TX

Paul Yura (NWS/Austin-San Antonio Warning Coordination Meteorologist) will be the SKYWARN instructor.

The web page for the training:
http://www.utexas.edu/depts/grg/kimmel/skywarn2014.html

This day of training is free and open to the public and recommended for…
.. storm spotters
.. amateur radio operators
.. law enforcement and first responders (PDs, FDs, EMS, etc)
.. news media (reporters, photographers)
.. governmental agencies (EMs,  etc)
.. anyone with an interest in learning more about severe and inclement weather

We hope you can make it out. If you can’t, there are other sessions scheduled throughout the spring around Central Texas.


Drought worsens in weekly update

February 20th, 2014 at 9:45 pm by under Weather

It’s not a surprise after another rain-free week, but our Central Texas drought is officially worse again this week, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor, with a larger area of severe to extreme drought over the Hill Country, and an expanding severe drought region over KXAN’s eastern viewing area counties.

2-20 DROUGHT MONITOR

DROUGHT INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE AUSTIN/SAN ANTONIO TX
1255 PM CST THU FEB 20 2014

...DROUGHT CONDITIONS GETTING SLIGHTLY WORSE ACROSS THE EASTERN
PORTIONS OF SOUTH CENTRAL TEXAS...

SYNOPSIS...

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Red Flag Warning Today 11AM – 8PM

February 20th, 2014 at 9:07 am by under Weather

1-1 BLANK

Here is the latest update from the National Weather Service concerning the Red Flag Warning:

Red Flag Warning

URGENT - FIRE WEATHER MESSAGE
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE AUSTIN/SAN ANTONIO TX
554 AM CST THU FEB 20 2014

...RED FLAG WARNING IN EFFECT FROM 11 AM TO 8 PM CST FOR GUSTY
NORTH WINDS AND LOW RELATIVE HUMIDITIES FOR AREAS GENERALLY ALONG
AND WEST OF INTERSTATE 35...

.A PACIFIC FRONT WILL MOVE ACROSS SOUTH CENTRAL TEXAS TODAY.
THIS FRONT WILL BRING MUCH DRIER AIR WITH GUSTY WINDS INTO THE
HILL COUNTRY BY LATE MORNING...THE INTO THE I- 35 CORRIDOR EARLY
BY EARLY AFTERNOON. RELATIVE HUMIDITIES WILL FALL INTO TO 10 TO 20
PERCENT RANGE BEHIND THE COLD FRONT. IN ADDITION... NORTHERLY
WINDS WILL INCREASE TO 15 TO 25 MPH WITH HIGHER GUSTS BETWEEN 30
AND 35 MPH.

 

...RED FLAG WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FROM 11 AM THIS MORNING TO
8 PM CST THIS EVENING FOR STRONG WINDS AND LOW RELATIVE
HUMIDITIES FOR AREAS ALONG AND WEST OF INTERSTATE 35...

* AFFECTED AREA...THE FOLLOWING SOUTH CENTRAL TEXAS COUNTIES...
  LLANO...BURNET...WILLIAMSON...VAL VERDE...EDWARDS...REAL...
  KERR...BANDERA...GILLESPIE...KENDALL...BLANCO...HAYS...
  TRAVIS...KINNEY...UVALDE...MEDINA...BEXAR...COMAL...
  MAVERICK...ZAVALA...FRIO...DIMMIT.

* 20-FOOT WIND...NORTH WINDS 15 TO 25 MPH WITH HIGHER GUSTS.

* HUMIDITY...10 TO 20 PERCENT.

* IMPACTS...ANY FIRES THAT DEVELOP WILL LIKELY SPREAD RAPIDLY.
  OUTDOOR BURNING IS NOT RECOMMENDED.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

A RED FLAG WARNING MEANS THAT CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER CONDITIONS
ARE EITHER OCCURRING NOW...OR WILL SHORTLY. A COMBINATION OF
STRONG WINDS...LOW RELATIVE HUMIDITY...AND WARM TEMPERATURES CAN
CONTRIBUTE TO EXTREME FIRE BEHAVIOR.

January lake inflows lowest since 1950s

February 19th, 2014 at 3:44 pm by under Weather

January driest in decades, severe drought continues

LCRA taking exceptional steps to protect and increase water supply

(LCRA.ORG)   The amount of water flowing into the Highland Lakes in January was the lowest for that month since the 1950s.

The lower Colorado River basin is in its seventh year of a severe drought, and the Highland Lakes remain near historic low levels, despite LCRA taking unprecedented measures to protect the water supply.

The lakes are refilled by rain and inflows, water that flows into the lakes from streams and tributaries. January is typically the region’s driest month, but this January was particularly dry. Less than one-half-inch of rain fell in most areas west of Interstate 35 and between one-half and 1 inch fell in most areas to the east of Interstate 35.

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Prescribed Burn For Today

February 19th, 2014 at 7:08 am by under Weather

Due to breezy conditions in the forecast, this morning’s prescribed burn may be postponed.  We’ll keep you updated on the latest.  In the meantime, here is the burn that is scheduled for today:

 

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Prescribed Burn to Help Restore Native Grasslands on
Water Quality Protection Lands
AUSTIN — Austin Water’s Wildland Conservation division will conduct a prescribed burn on 147 acres of the Water Quality Protection Lands on Wednesday, February 19, at 10:30 a.m.

The Wildland Conservation division will manage the burn in cooperation with the Austin Fire Department, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and Hays County officials. The burn area will be patrolled extensively for up to one week after the fire.


Smoke may be visible west of Buda and south of FM 1826 from mid-morning to sunset. Because this prescribed burn will produce smoke, the public should be aware of this controlled event and use discretion when contacting emergency services.


To ensure a safe and effective burn, the burn boss follows protocols that take into account several factors including weather and vegetation conditions. Leading up to the burn these conditions are monitored closely and if conditions become unsuitable the prescribed burn will be rescheduled.


Prescribed fire is an effective  management tool on the Water Quality Protection Lands.  They are managed as grassland savanna environments to protect the quality and quantity of water reaching the Barton Springs segment of the Edwards Aquifer. Prescribed burns safely mimic the natural fire cycle and maintain fire-resilient landscapes for the benefit of people, water, and wildlife.



Fire Weather Watch issued for Thursday

February 18th, 2014 at 8:05 pm by under Weather

A Pacific front will move across South Central Texas on Thursday. This will bring much drier air with breezy winds into the Hill Country late morning to midday and along Interstate 35 corridor early in the afternoon. Relative humidities will fall into the 10 to 20 percent range. Northerly winds will increase to 15 to 25 mph with higher gusts. With these conditions expected…any fires that develop will likely spread rapidly.

Free, public SKYWARN training this weekend

February 17th, 2014 at 12:26 pm by under Weather

skywarn


SKYWARN training is a great way to learn more about weather, and also help the media and National Weather Service in times of severe weather. Here’s the information on a FREE, PUBLIC meeting this weekend in Austin:

Saturday / 22 February 2014

815am – 330pm

23rd Annual Lou Withrow SkyWarn Training Session (Basic and Advanced Training)
ACC Riverside Campus, Building G, Room 8100
1020 Grove Boulevard, Austin, TX

Paul Yura (NWS/Austin-San Antonio Warning Coordination Meteorologist) will be the SKYWARN instructor.

The web page for the training:
http://www.utexas.edu/depts/grg/kimmel/skywarn2014.html

This day of training is free and open to the public and recommended for…
.. storm spotters
.. amateur radio operators
.. law enforcement and first responders (PDs, FDs, EMS, etc)
.. news media (reporters, photographers)
.. governmental agencies (EMs,  etc)
.. anyone with an interest in learning more about severe and inclement weather