Tornado near Birmingham, Alabama

January 25th, 2021 |

GOES-16 “Clean” Infrared Window (10.35 um) images [click to play animation | MP4]

1-minute Mesoscale Domain Sector GOES-16 (GOES-East) “Clean” Infrared Window (10.35 um) images (above) displayed the large supercell moving northeastward across Alabama several hours after sunset on 25 January 2021. This thunderstorm eventually produced an EF3 tornado just north of Birmingham (KBHM) beginning at 0440 UTC.

A slightly closer view of GOES-16 Infrared images that include plots of surface reports is shown below. Dew point values feeding northeastward into the thunderstorms were in the middle 60s F.

GOES-16 "Clean" Infrared Window (10.35 um) images [click to play animation | MP4]

GOES-16 “Clean” Infrared Window (10.35 um) images [click to play animation | MP4]

The coldest infrared brightness temperatures exhibited by the pulsing overshooting tops were -66ºC (darker shades of black) — which appeared to be the temperature that would be attained by a Most Unstable air parcel reaching the Maximum Parcel Level (MU MPL) as analyzed on a plot of 00 UTC rawinsonde data from Birmingham (below).

Plot of 00 UTC rawinsonde data from Birmingham, Alabama [click to enlarge]

Plot of 00 UTC rawinsonde data from Birmingham, Alabama [click to enlarge]

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