Department of Climate and Space Sciences and Engineering in the College of Engineering at the University of Michigan

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CLaSP Alumna Dr. Mary Morris Authors CYGNSS Science Overview for Physics Today

Posted: July 10, 2017

CLaSP Alumna Dr. Mary Morris Authors CYGNSS Science Overview for Physics Today Dr. Morris at CYGNSS launch, Dec. 2016

In a recent article published in Physics Today, Climate & Space alumna Dr. Mary Morris digs into the science behind the CYGNSS (Cyclone Global Navigation Satellite System) mission and the potential benefits for hurricane and tropical storm forecasting. 

From the article: 

"On 15 December 2016 a constellation of eight microsatellites successfully deployed into a low-inclination circular orbit after hitching a ride on a Pegasus XL rocket. The Cyclone Global Navigation Satellite System (CYGNSS), the first orbital mission funded under NASA’s Earth Venture program, peers through Earth’s atmosphere, clouds, and precipitation to gain a unique perspective on tropical cyclones.

"CYGNSS is especially valuable to forecasters because it specializes in acquiring a notoriously difficult yet extremely important measurement: surface wind speed near the core of the cyclone. CYGNSS is not plagued by the limitations of previous spaceborne instruments, which have struggled to observe Earth’s surface through the intense precipitation surrounding storms’ centers. Prelaunch research suggests that CYGNSS will become an important contributor to tropical cyclone forecasts. Observations from CYGNSS will also help diagnose cyclones’ destructive potential in terms of storm surge and winds—important information to communicate to those in the path of a storm."

Read the full article: http://physicstoday.scitation.org/do/10.1063/PT.6.1.20170707a/full/