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Surface wind speed and direction valid 12 UTC November 10, 1975, approximately 13 hours before the last communication from the ship. This simulation was generated by the CIMSS Regional Assimilation System (CRAS). Yellow arrows indicate wind direction, colors denote wind speed in knots. This 60-hour simulated IR satellite image loop demonstrates what a loop of geostationary satellite images would have looked like for this storm. Operational geostationary weather satellites (SMS-1 and SMS-2) were relatively new in 1975.

CIMSS Regional Assimilation System (CRAS) Simulation of the Edmund Fitzgerald Storm

Here is a 60-hour simulation, initialized at 00 UTC on 09 Nov 1975, of the storm that sunk the Edmund Fitzgerald. Ths simulation was produced by the CIMSS Regional Assimilation System (CRAS) model running at 61km resolution. The simulation was initialized using gridded data sets from the NCEP/NCAR Reanalysis generated by the National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) and the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR). Radiosonda data (balloon measurements) were extracted from the Integrated Global Radiosonde Archive (IGRA) at the National Climactic Data Center (NCDC). Computer simulations of past storms that caused significant loss of life and property are often created to help weather forecasters identify features unique to severe storms. Modern 3D visualization tools such as (Vis5D) can be used to examine storm characteristics that would not be detectible on conventional 2D weather maps. Vis5D data sets have been generated for this case study (see links below). Real-time computer forecasts like those generated by the CRAS were not available to weather forecasters in 1975. For more information see the UW press release.

New graphics from GEMPAK are available in coarse, medium, fine, and four-panel resolutions for the 61-kilometer run out to 60 hours.

Three-hourly graphics. Graphics of certain parameters from GEMPAK are available in medium resolution for the 61-kilometer run out to 60 hours.

Animated gifs of certain parameters from GEMPAK are available in medium and fine resolution for the 61-kilometer run out to 60 hours.

Animated gifs of certain parameters from GEMPAK are available in medium and fine resolution for the 20-kilometer nest run out to 60 hours.

NATIONAL MAPS

Fcst Surface 850 hPa 700 hPa 500 hPa 300 hPa Image Image
Initial pcp/mslp/Dz T/wind VV/wind vort/wind spd/dir 11um 6.7um
06 hr pcp/mslp/Dz T/wind VV/wind vort/wind spd/dir 11um 6.7um
12 hr pcp/mslp/Dz T/wind VV/wind vort/wind spd/dir 11um 6.7um
18 hr pcp/mslp/Dz T/wind VV/wind vort/wind spd/dir 11um 6.7um
24 hr pcp/mslp/Dz T/wind VV/wind vort/wind spd/dir 11um 6.7um
30 hr pcp/mslp/Dz T/wind VV/wind vort/wind spd/dir 11um 6.7um
36 hr pcp/mslp/Dz T/wind VV/wind vort/wind spd/dir 11um 6.7um
42 hr pcp/mslp/Dz T/wind VV/wind vort/wind spd/dir 11um 6.7um
48 hr pcp/mslp/Dz T/wind VV/wind vort/wind spd/dir 11um 6.7um
54 hr pcp/mslp/Dz T/wind VV/wind vort/wind spd/dir 11um 6.7um
60 hr pcp/mslp/Dz T/wind VV/wind vort/wind spd/dir 11um 6.7um
Loop pcp/mslp/Dz T/wind VV/wind vort/wind spd/dir 11um 6.7um
Fcst Surface 850 hPa 700 hPa 500 hPa 300 hPa Image Image


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Please refer questions or comments to the CRASmaster at cras@ssec.wisc.edu.