VORTEX2 began last year and comes on the heels of VORTEX1, which took place during the severe weather season's of 1994 and 1995. VORTEX2 is a much expanded project and kicked off in the 2009 season and will conclude this year. The basic questions driving VORTEX2's agenda are:
- How, when, and why do tornadoes form?
- Why are some tornadoes violent and long-lasting while others are weak and short lived?
- What is the structure of tornadoes?
- How strong are a particular tornadoes winds near the ground?
- How exactly do the winds from a tornado do damage?
- How can we forecast tornadoes better?
- Can we make tornado warnings more accurate, and can we warn 30, 45, 60 minutes ahead of one?
On a final note, the 2009 season of VORTEX2 started slow but ended incredibly -- and I watched it LIVE via The Weather Channel on June 8 when VORTEX2 intercepted a tornado in Wyoming and Nebraska. It was totally, amazingly and absolutely AWESOME! Check it out here...