RESOURCES: Weather Reports for the Cognoscenti

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Science  18 Jun 2004:
Vol. 304, Issue 5678, pp. 1725
DOI: 10.1126/science.304.5678.1725b

Plenty of Web sites provide maps of current temperatures and precipitation and gaudy Doppler radar images of storms. But what if you're seeking wind velocity measurements that can help predict tornadoes, or high-resolution satellite images of cloud patterns? The newly upgraded Real-Time Weather Data site from meteorologist Greg Thompson of the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado, brims with in-depth information on weather across North America. For tornado researchers and chasers, the site's Doppler radar section includes values for wind speed toward or away from a station—data that most other weather sites charge for, Thompson says. Satellite images updated every 15 to 30 minutes capture variables such as atmospheric water vapor for individual states and the nation. Above, a Doppler image of wind speeds shows thunderstorms brewing near Wichita, Kansas, earlier this month.

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