This year, it has several more new tools that are proving useful. The scientists changed the way they initialize, or start up, their model, called the Hurricane Weather Research and Forecasting model.
They've also gotten better at plugging real-time data into the model from the aircraft that fly into the hurricane to collect information on conditions inside the storm.
"We haven't been good at using that [real-time] data in our models, and this year that will be used regularly whenever the data is available," Gall said.
The Weather Service is also using the additional supercomputing power it put in place in late July, which processes data twice as fast, to improve its forecasts. At the end of the season, it will evaluate its forecasts to see whether those tools led to improvements, Gall said.
Reprinted from Climatewire with permission from Environment & Energy Publishing, LLC. www.eenews.net, 202-628-6500