Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Questions About the Atlanta Tornado

Yes, there was a tornado in the Atlanta Metro area. Some -- morbidly -- seem disappointed there wasn't more damage. I think this is because there was a consistent debris signature on dual-polarization Doppler radar (see posting below). However, the debris signature -- as explained below -- doesn't tell you much, if anything, about the amount of damage.

At AccuWeather Enterprise Solutions, we usually watch the wind circulation on the Federal Aviation Administration's Terminal Doppler Weather Radar which, I believe, has better wind detection capability in these situations. Below is an example from my Twitter feed.
The tornado wind signature was tiny and not especially strong. So, I think some may have misinterpreted the size of the debris signature for a more destructive tornado than we hope occurred.

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