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Hurricane ClimatologyA Modern Statistical Guide Using R$
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James B. Elsner and Thomas H. Jagger

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199827633

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2020

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780199827633.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 28 July 2021

Data Sets

Data Sets

(p.133) 6 Data Sets
Hurricane Climatology

James B. Elsner

Thomas H. Jagger

Oxford University Press

Hurricane data originate from careful analysis of past storms by operational meteorologists. The data include estimates of the hurricane position and intensity at 6-hourly intervals. Information related to landfall time, local wind speeds, damages, and deaths, as well as cyclone size, are included. The data are archived by season. Some effort is needed to make the data useful for hurricane climate studies. In this chapter, we describe the data sets used throughout this book. We show you a work flow that includes importing, interpolating, smoothing, and adding attributes. We also show you how to create subsets of the data. Code in this chapter is more complicated and it can take longer to run. You can skip this material on first reading and continue with model building in Chapter 7. You can return here when you have an updated version of the data that includes the most recent years. Most statistical models in this book use the best-track data. Here we describe these data and provide original source material. We also explain how to smooth and interpolate them. Interpolations are needed for regional hurricane analyses. The best-track data set contains the 6-hourly center locations and intensities of all known tropical cyclones across the North Atlantic basin, including the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Sea. The data set is called HURDAT for HURricane DATa. It is maintained by the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) at the National Hurricane Center (NHC). Center locations are given in geographic coordinates (in tenths of degrees) and the intensities, representing the one-minute near-surface (∼10 m) wind speeds, are given in knots (1 kt = .5144 m s−1) and the minimum central pressures are given in millibars (1 mb = 1 hPa). The data are provided in 6-hourly intervals starting at 00 UTC (Universal Time Coordinate). The version of HURDAT file used here contains cyclones over the period 1851 through 2010 inclusive. Information on the history and origin of these data is found in Jarvinen et al (1984). The file has a logical structure that makes it easy to read with a FORTRAN program. Each cyclone contains a header record, a series of data records, and a trailer record.

Keywords:   NAO (North Atlantic Oscillation), annual aggregation, best-track data, coastal county winds, data sets, importing data, intensification rates, location-specific attributes, maximum intensity, netCDF files

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