New website pools hurricane predictions, including CSU Atlantic Basin forecast

tropical storm ingrid

Barcelona Supercomputing Center, Colorado State University and XL Catlin have launched a new website to track seasonal hurricane forecasts and the evolution of hurricane activity.

Seasonal Hurricane Predictions brings together forecasts from major centers that specialize in hurricanes, with information dating back to 1996. It also offers extensive information to promote understanding of the factors that contribute to these meteorological phenomena, which can have devastating consequences, and to help explain why different models produce different predictions.

Seasonal Hurricane Predictions has been created to pool predictions by the main centers carrying out forecasts on the hurricane season, which usually runs from early June to late November, and to make them available to the wider public.

CSU, 16 others represented

The 17 centers whose forecasts are presented on the website are: Accu Weather, Coastal Carolina University, Colorado State University, MDA Weather Services, NC State University, NMME, The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Penn State University, The University of Arizona, Weatherbell Analytics, The Weather Company, WeatherTigger (all based in the U.S.), the Servicio Meteorológico Nacional of México, the Instituto Cubano de Meteorología (Cuba), StormGeo (Norway), Tropical Storm Risk at University College London, and the UK Met Office (United Kingdom).

The website shows the average number of hurricanes that are expected to affect the North Atlantic coasts and those that have already affected them to date. A color code indicates the degree of activity of each hurricane.

The website offers areas for non-specialists, as well as sections where users can look up forecasts from each center in greater depth. It also distinguishes between different types of hurricane according to the extent of their actual or expected impact.

The site provides an explanation for all audiences on climatic factors that influence hurricane activity in the Atlantic, and the aspects assigned greater importance by different predictions. The objective of these sections is to offer people more data to help understand hurricanes and why there are so many divergent forecasts.

Barcelona supercomputing, CSU joint effort

Seasonal Hurricane Predictions has been developed by Barcelona Supercomputing Center and Colorado State University, who jointly carried out the scientific work, and the communication company Iskiam Jara, which was responsible for the design and implementation of the website. The project was sponsored by the Irish multinational insurance company XL Catlin.