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National Science Foundation
Introduction
 
A New and Better Way
 
Fall Predicts Winter
 
New Seasonal Forecast Model
 
model accuracy demonstrated
 
Classroom Resources
 
 
 
Germantown, MD: snowstorm. Click for larger image.

A snowstorm hit hard in Germantown, Md. in winter 2003. Click here for more information.

Credit: NOAA/NWS Historic Collection


Fall Predicts Winter
Insert info. Click for larger image.
A snowstorm buries cars in Baltimore, Maryland.

Credit: Bill Swartwout; www.SouthBaltimore.com

Researchers at AER and MIT are taking winter weather forecasting beyond El Nino by investigating the relationship between Siberian snow cover in fall months, and Northern Hemisphere climate variability during the winter. A forecast model developed by AER scientist Judah Cohen has achieved on-target forecasts for major cities in the industrialized countries.

"Weather affects peoples' lives and the global economy on a daily basis," says Anjuli Bamzai, program director in NSF's climate dynamics program. "Improving our ability to predict cold weather and heavy snow has obvious benefits. The success of Cohen's real-time forecasts offers a way to improve our ability to anticipate such important events."

Forecast Temperature Anomaly Dec-Jan-Feb 2016
Predicted winter surface temperature anomalies for the United States for December 2015, January and February 2016 in degrees Fahrenheit. The model is forecasting cold for much of the Southern and and Eastern United States with warm in the Western and Northern United States. The model uses October Siberian snow cover, sea level pressure anomalies, predicted El Nino/Southern Oscillation anomalies and observed September Arctic sea ice anomalies. October Siberian snow cover advanced at an above normal rate. This is an indication of an increased probability of a weakened polar vortex or a sudden stratospheric warming and a predominantly negative Arctic Oscillation during the winter, with cold temperatures in the Southeast, Mid-Atlantic and eastern Great Lakes. However, the expectation this winter of one of the strongest El Ninos ever observed contributed to a warm temperature forecast for the northwestern United States.

Credit: Judah Cohen, AER, Inc.
Predicting Seasonal Weather A Special Report
Forecasted Temperature Anomaly. Click for larger image. Observed Temperature Anomaly. Click for larger image.