A simulated supercell forming in the composite environment of tornadic storms from VORTEX2. The cloud outline is white, the strongest updraft is red, and the surface radar reflectivity is shaded.
The Convective Storms Group
Marine, Earth, and Atmospheric Sciences
North Carolina State University


Our research group was established at NC State in 2005, and is under the direction of Dr. Matthew Parker.



   


Welcome! Our current research focuses on the dynamics of convective storms, including tornadic supercells and mesoscale convective systems (MCSs). Such storms and systems have great impact upon our society owing to the hazardous weather they produce, and owing to their copious precipitation (which is critical to the water budget in large parts of the Americas). Some meteorological topics of ongoing interest to our group include: impacts of low-level wind and thermodynamic profiles upon supercells and tornadogenesis (including in landfalling hurricanes); effects of gravity waves on the environments of supercells and MCSs; storms' sensitivities and interactions in the high-shear regime that spans the MCS-supercellular spectrum; low-level kinematics and dynamics of elevated convection; and, climatology of convective storms in the eastern U.S.

To pursue these research goals, we utilize idealized numerical simulations (with the benefit of NCSU's supercomputer facilities), conventional observations (e.g. from the National Weather Service), and data from field projects such as the Bow Echo and Mesoscale Convective Vortex Experiment ("BAMEX") and the Verification of the Origin of Rotation in Tornadoes Experiment 2 ("VORTEX2").

To see our currently funded grants and information for prospective graduate RAs, please visit our Project Summaries page. For a bit more on our recent and ongoing efforts, see "What's New" below.

NC State is a great place to study Mesoscale Meteorology, and North Carolina's Research Triangle is a great place to live! Interested in joining us? Contact Dr. Parker for more information.

The Convective Storms Group is...
Dr. Matthew D. Brown Parker faculty advisor
Brice Coffer graduate research assistant and Ph.D. candidate
Jessica King graduate research assistant and M.S. candidate
Keith Sherburn graduate research assistant and Ph.D. candidate
Most recent group photo

Alumni Degree Last known whereabouts
Adam Baker B.S. (2007) National Weather Service, Peachtree City, GA
Ben Baranowski Ph.D. cand. (2006-8) Warning Decision Training Branch
Jerilyn Billings M.S. (2007) National Weather Service, Wichita, KS
Billy Booth M.S. (2008) National Hurricane Center
Johannes Dahl post-doc (2010-13) faculty, Texas Tech Univ.
Casey Davenport M.S., Ph.D. (2013) faculty, U. North Carolina-Charlotte
Jason Davis M.S. (2013) National Weather Service, Birmingham, AL
Adam French M.S., Ph.D. (2011) faculty, SD School of Mines and Tech.
Mike Kiefer Ph.D. (2009) research scientist, Mich. St. U./US Forest Service
Chris MacIntosh M.S. (2014) PlotWatt energy conservation and monitoring
Matt Morin M.S. (2011) High Performance Tech. Inc./Geophys. Fluid Dyn. Lab.


What's New:   (current and recent group members in bold)

March 2015: Keith Sherburn was awarded an Outstanding Teaching Assistant award from NCSU. Congratulations!

Parker, M. D., and J. M. L. Dahl, in press: Production of near-surface vertical vorticity by idealized downdrafts. Mon. Wea. Rev. accepted in final form, March 2015.

Coffer, B.E., and M. D. Parker, in press: Impacts of increasing lower tropospheric vertical wind shear on supercells during the early evening transition. Mon. Wea. Rev., accepted in final form January 2015.

Clark, A.J., M.C. Coniglio, B.E. Coffer, G. Thompson, M. Xue, and F. Kong, in press: Sensitivity of 24 h Forecast Dryline Position and Structure to Boundary Layer Parameterizations in Convection-allowing WRF Model Simulations. Wea. Forecasting, accepted in final form January 2015.

Davenport, C. E., and M. D. Parker, in press: Observations of the 9 June 2009 dissipating supercell from VORTEX2. Wea. Forecasting, accepted in final form December 2014.

Parker, M.D., 2015: Convective storm modeling. Encyclopedia of Atmospheric Sciences, 2nd edition, G. R. North, J. Pyle, and F. Zhang, Eds., Vol. 4, Academic Press Elsevier, 246-254.

French, A. J.,, and M. D. Parker, 2014: Numerical simulations of bow echo formation following a squall line - supercell merger. Mon Wea. Rev., 142, 4791-4822.

Coffer, B. E., and M. D. Parker, 2014: Impact of increasing low-level shear on supercells during the evening transition. 27th Conference on Severe Local Storms, AMS, 2-7 November 2014, Madison, WI.

Coffer, B. E., 2014: Simulating a convective event with "tornado-preventing" walls. 27th Conference on Severe Local Storms, AMS, 2-7 November 2014, Madison, WI.

King, J. R., and M. D. Parker, 2014: Synoptic influence on high shear, low CAPE convective events. 27th Conference on Severe Local Storms, AMS, 2-7 November 2014, Madison, WI.

Macintosh, C. W., and M. D. Parker, 2014: The 6 May 2010 elevated supercell during VORTEX2. 27th Conference on Severe Local Storms, AMS, 2-7 November 2014, Madison, WI. Honorable mention for best student poster!

Parker, M.D., and J. M. L. Dahl, 2014: Impacts of the storm-relative wind profile upon surface vorticity production in downdrafts. 27th Conference on Severe Local Storms, AMS, 2-7 November 2014, Madison, WI.

Sherburn, K. D., and M. D. Parker, 2014: High-shear low-CAPE environments: what we know and where to go next. 27th Conference on Severe Local Storms, AMS, 2-7 November 2014, Madison, WI.

Sherburn, K. D., and M. D. Parker, 2014: On the usage of composite parameters in high-shear low-CAPE environments. 27th Conference on Severe Local Storms, AMS, 2-7 November 2014, Madison, WI.

October 2014: Epic fail: Giant walls wouldn't stop tornadoes. USA Today, article by D. Rice, featuring the work of Brice Coffer.

Coffer, B. E., 2014: Would "tornado-preventing" walls work? Electronic J. Severe Storms Meteor., 9 (4), 1-13.

Dahl, J. M. L., M. D. Parker, and L. J. Wicker, 2014: Imported and storm-generated near-ground vertical vorticity in a simulated supercell. J. Atmos. Sci., 71, 3027-3051.

Davis, J. M., and M. D. Parker, 2014: Radar climatology of tornadic and non-tornadic vortices in high shear, low CAPE environments in the mid-Atlantic and southeastern U.S. Wea. Forecasting, 29, 828-853.

Sherburn, K. D., and M. D. Parker, 2014: Climatology and ingredients of significant severe convection in high shear, low CAPE environments. Wea. Forecasting, 29, 854-877.

June 2014: Enormous Tornado-Blocking Walls: Could Wild Idea Really Work? Live Science, article by M. Gannon, featuring interviews with Brice Coffer and Matt Parker.

Clark, A. J., M. Coniglio, and B. E. Coffer, 2014: Sensitivity of 24 h Forecast Dryline Position and Structure to Boundary Layer Parameterizations in Convection-allowing WRF Model Simulations. 26th Conference on Weather Analysis and Forecasting / 22nd Conference on Numerical Weather Prediction, AMS, 2-6 February 2014, Atlanta, GA.

Coffer, B., and M. D. Parker, 2014: Impacts of Increasing Low-Level Shear on Supercells During the Evening Transition. Special Symposium on Severe Local Storms: The Current State of the Science and Understanding Impacts, AMS, 2-6 February 2014, Atlanta, GA.

Coffer, B. E., 2014: Sensitivity of Simulated Drylines to Boundary Layer Parameterization and Grid-Spacing. 13th Annual Student Conference of the AMS, 2-6 February 2014, Atlanta, GA.

MacIntosh, C. W., and M. D. Parker, 2014: The 6 May 2010 Elevated Supercell During VORTEX2. Special Symposium on Severe Local Storms: The Current State of the Science and Understanding Impacts, AMS, 2-6 February 2014, Atlanta, GA.

Parker, M.D., 2014: Composite VORTEX2 supercell environments from near-storm soundings. Mon. Wea. Rev., 142, 508-529.

Sherburn, K. D.,, and M. D. Parker, 2013: Analysis of composite parameter skill in forecasting significant severe high shear low CAPE convection. 38th Annual Meeting of the National Weather Association, 12-17 October 2013, North Charleston, SC.

Letkewicz, C. E., A. J. French, and M. D. Parker, 2013: Base-state substitution: An idealized modeling technique for approximating environmental variability. Mon. Wea. Rev., 141, 3062-3086.

Coffer, B.E., and M. D. Parker, 2013: Impacts of low-level environmental shear upon surface vorticity in supercells. 15th Conference on Mesoscale Processes, AMS, 6-9 August 2013, Portland, OR.

Dahl, J. M. L., M. D. Parker, and L. J. Wicker, 2013: The roles of ambient and storm-generated vorticity in near-ground rotation of a simulation supercell. 15th Conference on Mesoscale Processes, AMS, 6-9 August 2013, Portland, OR.

MacIntosh, C. W., and M. D. Parker, 2013: The 5 May 2010 elevated supercell observed during VORTEX2. 15th Conference on Mesoscale Processes, AMS, 6-9 August 2013, Portland, OR. Honorable mention for best student poster!

Parker, M. D., and J.M.L. Dahl, 2013: Toy model simulations of surface vorticity generation in downdrafts. 15th Conference on Mesoscale Processes, AMS, 6-9 August 2013, Portland, OR.

Sherburn, K. D., J. Dahl, and M. D. Parker, 2013: Development of mesovortices and tornado-like vortices within idealized high-shear, low-CAPE simulations. 15th Conference on Mesoscale Processes, AMS, 6-9 August 2013, Portland, OR.

Yuter, S. E., M. A. Miller, M. D. Parker, P. M. Markowski, Y. Richardson, H. Brooks, and J. M. Straka, 2013: Comment on "Why do tornadoes and hailstorms rest on weekends?". J. Geophys. Res., 118, 1-7, doi:10.1002/jgrd.50526.

Coffer, B. E., L. C. Maudlin, P. G. Veals, and A. J. Clark, 2013: Dryline Position Errors in Experimental Convection-Allowing NSSL-WRF Model Forecasts and the Operational NAM. Wea. Forecasting, 28, 746-761.

Dahl, J. M. L., M. D. Parker, and L. J. Wicker, 2013: The role of ambient horizontal vorticity in near-ground rotation of supercells. 7th European Conference on Severe Storms, 3-7 June 2013, Helsinki, Finland.

Davis, J. M., K. D. Sherburn, and M. D. Parker, 2013: Investigation of high-shear, low-CAPE severe convection in the Southeastern and Mid-Atlantic United States. 7th European Conference on Severe Storms, 3-7 June 2013, Helsinki, Finland.

Parker, M. D., and J.M.L. Dahl, 2013: Toy model simulations of baroclinic and barotropic processes in downdrafts. 7th European Conference on Severe Storms, 3-7 June 2013, Helsinki, Finland.

Parker, M., B. Coffer, and C. MacIntosh, 2013: Composite VORTEX2 supercell environment from mobile soundings. VORTEX2 Science Workshop, 9-11 April 2013, Balcones Springs, TX.

Coffer, B. E., L. C. Maudlin, P. G. Veals, and A. J. Clark, 2013: Dryline position errors in experimental convection-allowing NSSL WRF Model forecasts and the operational NAM. 12th Annual Student Conference, AMS, 5-6 January 2013, Austin, TX. Awarded best graduate student poster presentation!

Sherburn, K. D., and M. D. Parker, 2013: The high-shear/low-CAPE problem: Improving detection of significant weather events in marginally unstable environments. 12th Annual Student Conference, AMS, 5-6 January 2013, Austin, TX.


Links:

The Convective Storms Group's data and software help page


last updated 23 March 2015