Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Closing Thoughts by Shannon

Hello everyone! Wow. . . SWIFT was a whirl-wind adventure! The long hours spent on the road traveling through eleven different states were not futile as our total tornado count was four, with some count variation between each SWIFT member. Not only did I observe four beautiful tornadoes, but I also now have an increased understanding of tornadogenesis, the required environmental conditions necessary to produce a tornado, and the difference between a healthy and unhealthy supercell thunderstorm. While our first tornado has a special place in my heart and had an eerie resemblance to the tornado from the movie Twister, the visually appealing look and obvious rotation of the supercell from our first chase day was one of my favorite SWIFT moments. After having Professor Barrett and LCDR Burich explain the process multiple times, the connections were made between the textbook teaching and real-life experience quicker than I would have thought. As we close up our journey and begin our trek back to Annapolis, I  believe my teammates and I have an increased confidence in our ability to identify and explain updraft/downdraft, inflow/outflow, vertical wind shear, and other aspects of supercells. The entire SWIFT experience exceeded my expectations and I could not have imagined a better group to have experienced it with! (:


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