Hurricane Intensification and Implications from African Dust

dc.contributor.advisorYang, Ruixin
dc.contributor.authorFairley, Allison S.
dc.creatorFairley, Allison S.
dc.description.abstractUnderstanding what factors cause significant intensification or weakening of tropical systems will enable meteorologists to better understand the complexities of a hurricane. Currently, scientists have a good understanding of the fundamental causes of a hurricane track prediction. However, grasping what causes a hurricane to intensify or diminish is still being intensely studied. Understanding hurricane behavior will allow better warnings and preventative measures for protecting lives and property. This thesis studies the Atlantic hurricanes from 2005 and 2006 and the role aerosol optical depth (AOD) plays in hurricane intensity and intensification changes. This thesis uses linear regression modeling to look at the effects of independent variables: sea surface temperature (SST), AOD, vertical shear, and relative humidity, have on the 12-hour intensity change. This regression is tested with each variable, and then in groupings: by year and then hurricane classification. The results are compared and, if possible, relationships within the selected data are determined. The outcomes of the study show that there is significant linearity between the SST, AOD, relative humidity, and vertical shear, and the 12-hour hurricane intensity change. However, many other factors play a part in the strengthening and weakening of a tropical system such that AOD, vertical shear, SST, and relative humidity cannot solely define or predict the size and strength of a system (Khain 2010). Generally, the more cases and variables that can be linked to hurricane intensity, the better the prediction model for tropical systems can be developed to display the relationship with hurricane intensity change.
dc.subjectAerosol Optical Depth (AOD)
dc.subjectAfrican dust
dc.titleHurricane Intensification and Implications from African Dust
dc.typeThesis Systems Science Mason University's of Science in Earth Systems Science


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