The Influence of Wind Shear on Thunderstorms

Strong vertical wind shear is important for the development of severe convective storms including the type of thunderstorm, its orientation, and its life span. Wind shear can influence storms in several ways, including speed shear and directional shear. Speed shear is a change in the wind speed with respect to height, while directional shear is the […]

The Tools and Concepts for Forecasting Winter Precipitation

Introduction This informative forecast writing will focus on the weather forecasting tools and concepts that are used to predict winter weather events. There are various types of winter weather events that are analyzed and forecasted including mid-latitude cyclones, ice storms, lake-effect snows and sleet storms. Each of these will be discussed separately. In addition, bust […]

Historic snowstorm in North Texas on 2/12/2010. DFW recorded its greatest 24-hour snowfall of all time (12.5").

General Snow Forecasting

Snow is a precipitation type that results from the build-up of ice deposition upon condensation nuclei. The snowflake size is amplified as ice crystals join together as the crystals move in the wind. A common theme in ice crystal development is the 6-sized structure of the ice crystals. The chemical bonding of ice molecules produces […]

Snow to Liquid Equivalent and Associated Forecasting Pitfalls

The snow-to-liquid equivalent is the amount of liquid precipitation that is produced after melting snow. The temperature profile of the troposphere and the surface temperature are important factors that determine this value. The “average” snow-to-liquid ratio is 10:1. This is saying that if 10 inches of snow fell and that snow was melted it would […]

Does a Warm Winter Mean the Summer Will be Hotter than Normal?

Introduction The title is a question that is frequently asked of meteorologists, especially in the wake of an abnormally warm or cool season; it is a topic of interest among atmospheric scientists and the general public alike.  In this article, we will attempt to answer this question using climatology, casting aside gut feelings and old […]