David Ban ’24
The Climate Footprint on Sea Surface Temperatures and Tropical Cyclones
I studied the influence of climate change on Atlantic Ocean sea surface temperature (SST) and its relation to tropical cyclones. Warm water is a key factor for tropical cyclones, and the impact of warmer SSTs on cyclones is a significant topic in climate science and meteorology. I aimed to better quantify global warming’s footprint on SST and to highlight this footprint for cyclones. Climate Central created a Climate Shift Index (CSI) scale that compares the likelihood of a given land temperature in the current climate and in a warming-free climate. I used the program Python to apply the underlying method of the CSI project to SSTs to obtain climate factor (CF) values, which measure the change in probability of a certain SST at a location and time. Then, I used tropical cyclone data to obtain CF values along a storm’s track at the corresponding time and location to find relationships between the storms and the CF. I gained experience with Python and learned to analyse large meteorological datasets. I always wanted a future in severe weather research, but never thought that I would engage with climate issues. I now have an appreciation for how intertwined climate science and meteorology are.
Extreme Weather and Impacts
Climate Central - Princeton, New Jersey
Andrew Pershing, Director of Climate Science, Climate Central; Daniel Gilford, Climate Scientist, Climate Central