Scientific Device Predicts Weather Patterns - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Scientific Device Predicts Weather Patterns

By Walter Makaula

HONOLULU (KHNL)- The high winds remind us all, we're still in the middle of winter storm season in Hawaii, and to help us predict weather emergencies, the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration is on a special mission here in the islands. Nine members of the team are flying reconnaissance flights high above storms in the pacific to survey weather activity.

They release highly sensitive electronic devices called dropsondes. Between sixteen and twenty of them are launched from a surveillance jet at a cost of seven hundred and fifty dolllars a piece. But the information they provide, can save many lives.

Jack Parrish of the NOAA team says, "The technology allows these instruments to report back as they go down through the atmosphere, temperature, pressure, humidity, and then they use a GPS module on board to give us horizontal wind direction and wind speed.

Parrish says, this type of work is rarely done in Hawaii, but can be extremely helpful. Information from these weather tracking devices can give experts up to an additional day to warn people of upcoming weather emergencies.

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