Music: "Snowfall" by Andy Blythe [PRS], Marten Joustra [PRS], "Snow Blanket" by Benjamin James Parsons [PRS]
When giant white swirls of clouds cover the weather map with a winter storm warning, one question looms in the minds of people in its path: How much snow will it bring? With snow threatening access to roads, work, and school – not to mention all the shoveling – winter snowfall is one of the most consequential weather phenomena on the U.S. East Coast. It’s also one of the most difficult to predict.
Starting in January 2020, NASA is sending a team of scientists, a host of ground instruments, and two research aircraft to study the inner workings of snow storms. The Investigation of Microphysics Precipitation for Atlantic Coast-Threatening Snowstorms, or IMPACTS, field campaign will be the first comprehensive study of East Coast snowstorms in 30 years.
Areas that get a lot of snow tend to be beneath narrow regions within the clouds called snowbands. To understand snowbands, the IMPACTS science team will fly through them in NASA’s P-3 Orion research aircraft, based out of NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia.
GCMD keywords can be found on the Internet with the following citation:
Olsen, L.M., G. Major, K. Shein, J. Scialdone, S. Ritz, T. Stevens, M. Morahan, A. Aleman, R. Vogel, S. Leicester, H. Weir, M. Meaux, S. Grebas, C.Solomon, M. Holland, T. Northcutt, R. A. Restrepo, R. Bilodeau, 2013. NASA/Global Change Master Directory (GCMD) Earth Science Keywords. Version 22.214.171.124.0