Wind in Real Time

Here's a site I'll be returning to often. If you look right now, you'll see it looks as though someone pulled a drain plug in North Dakota. I'll be looking forward to viewing the site the next time we have a really good nor'easter or hurricane.


DL Sly said...

That's really cool, T99! It does look like someone pulled the plug up there.

Texan99 said...

What the image doesn't show us is whether the air is going up or down. It's just a picture of the air movement at some chosen altitude. There's something interesting happening around Salt Lake City, too, for instance. Up or down?

E Hines said...

This is cool.

It'll also be interesting to track this through the seasons and Nino/Nina cycles.

I'd be curious to see two other things, in addition to your suggestion:

1) a terrain map, and
2) the flows extended into Canada and Mexico. What is there in Canada that's contributing to the Dakota pull? Why do the wind flows parallel, mostly, the western US/Mexico border?

Eric Hines

E Hines said...

Chasing the definitions, a bit. From the wind map's statement at the bottom, Surface wind data comes from the National Digital Forecast Database. Their database definitions say that their surface winds are measured to a height of 10m.

There wouldn't seem to be a a lot of vertical movement here.

Eric Hines

james said...

Very cool.

Is that Canadian "pull" what Perot was talking about?

Anonymous said...

Well this is also a good map if there is ever an nuclear emergency. Tell you which way to travel so you are heading away from the contamination.

Texan99 said...

Eric, as I understand this map it's not trying to give us any information about vertical movement -- but if winds blow from all compass directions into a point, it's got to be going either up or down from there. Wouldn't it be great to have a 3D map you could "fly" around in to see all that kind of movement?

And especially for those of us who live pretty close to the international border, it's often frustrating how the weather maps just stop dead at the Rio Grande. There was a good Onion piece once with the weathermen commenting on the harmless projected path of a hurricane "into this great gray area, where no one lives."

Anonymous said...

Weeellll, since surface winds flow into a low pressure system and away from a high pressure system, I'd say the wind (at 1600 CDT, April 1) is getting pulled into a low in, oh, South Dakota? Nice to see that, once again, I'm in one of the windiest strips of the U.S. (aside from anywhere a legislative body is meeting or someone is campaigning).


Texan99 said...

Come to think of it, I guess since this map shows winds at only 10m of elevation, when the winds are all blowing in, they must be going up.

I wish I'd been up and watching this at about 4 this morning, because we had a completely unexpected thunder-and-hail storm blow through, with over 1-1/2 inches of much-needed rain. In a storm like that, unfortunately, we lose our satellite internet connection for the duration.

Life looks interesting just east of Denver this morning.

Bob's Blog said...

Yes, I live just east and south of Denver. We had snow and wind all day. No problem! We needed the moisture, but not the wind. I linked your post here: