This post looks at some of MetService's activities in the southwest Pacific, particularly a severe weather project and the training we have provided to individual countries over the last 7 months.
Update, Friday 14 December
Around midday on Thursday 6 December an active trough line passed slowly through Auckland. One of these thunderstorm cells contained a tornado which touched down near Hobsonville, tragically killing three people.
This blog post has been set up to keep you informed of the latest developments in this weather system as it travels south-east from Auckland.
Why redesign metservice.com?
We understand that knowing what the weather’s doing helps you plan your day and stay safe when you’re out in the elements. The website is three years old now, and over that time we’ve added a lot of new content and have made hundreds of tweaks from hundreds of emails that you have sent us. With SO much new content, it was time to stop and review the website to ensure it is clear and easy to use and that it gives us a good platform to move forward from for the next few years – we hope you like it.
In the English language we have many words in common usage that have related but more specific meanings in a scientific and mathematical context. The key word of this blog post, “convergence”, is a good example of this. We sometimes hear of people’s views on some matter initially disagreeing and then, later, coming together or “converging”. In fluid dynamics we’re often interested in regions where different air flows come together. We call this type of flow convergence, and say that the air is converging.
The word you probably heard a lot during last Summer was La Nina. As we head into the spring you might hear another term quite a bit and that is El Nino. We all know that El Ninos bring different types of weather to New Zealand compared to La Ninas but what is an El Nino? Does it always mean the same sort of weather for New Zealand? Not necessarily - this season we might not have the typical sort of El Nino weather.
Monday night’s eruption at Mount Tongariro set in motion MetService’s volcanic ash monitoring process for the aviation industry. The Volcanic Ash Advisory process involves interaction between aircraft operators, Airways Corporation and MetService, with important volcanic information input from GNS Science.
This information is also provided to Civil Aviation (CAA) and is used by them to designate Volcanic Hazard zones around those volcanoes that are known to be Volcanic Alert Level 1 or higher.
Last Monday evening, having just arrived home after the short walk from Trentham Station, I remarked to my family that it was unusual for the wind to blow from the northeast in Upper Hutt. Five days later and it’s still blowing from there.
On Thursday 26 July 2012 a cold southeasterly airstream flowed onto the North Island, around an anticyclone centred just east of the South Island. In this blog post we’ll look at some interesting small-scale cloud structures around the country on this day. Below is the weather map at midday on Thursday 26 July. The red arrows show the sense of the broad-scale rotation around the anticyclone.