Wilmington HotelsWilmington AdvertiseWilmington AttractionsWilmington BeachesWilmington Business DirectoryWilmingtonWilmingtonWilmington GolfWilmington JobsWilmington NewsWilmington DiningWilmington Weather
     

 

 

Wilmington, NC News

  Free Wilmington Travel Guide!

Archive for November, 2009

Atmosphere Academy: Weather and Math

Monday, November 30th, 2009

Body

More properly referred to as atmospheric numerical predictions, weather models are mathematical equations that try to represent the atmosphere.

The basic premise is simple enough. If you can figure out an equation to represent the changes in speed and movement of a developing storm system, you can get an accurate forecast by solving the equation. In practice, it’s a little more complicated.

The atmosphere is a fluid, which is to say that its always in motion, all over the place. Equations representing the atmosphere can quickly become rather convoluted, involving questions of mass, momentum, and thermal energy. Thank goodness we have computers to help us with the computations, and it’s a job even for them.

Rather than analyzing ever nook and cranny of air all over the globe (which would be impossible), computers instead divide the atmosphere into imaginary grids, where equations can be computed on a manageable scale. This gives us a good estimate of how storms are moving, but it’s far from the whole story. That’s why computer models give us wrong forecasts from time to time, which gets us back to the original question; how can we improve our reliability?

One way is to increase the number of grids, which gives us better resolution and hopefully a more accurate output. Of course, this increases the work load for the computer exponentially. A better, more common sense way to improve accuracy, is to make sure you properly initialize the model.

Before any model is run, it’s fed the latest weather information from weather balloons, dropsondes, and other instruments. After all, the computer has to know where storms are now, before it can figure out where the storms are headed. The more accurate our current observations, the better chance that the forecast will be correct.

And some models handle certain situations better than others. Some models are geared more toward tropical meteorology; others do a better job with land-based systems. So the number 1 best way to improve forecast accuracy is to know which model to use in a given situation, and that comes only from experience.

Story image

atmos300.jpg

Story summary

videoDid you like math in school? How about computers? If you are a meteorologist, you do not have a choice. Meteorologist Jerry Jackson has more in this week’s edition of Atmosphere Academy.

Story summary image

atmos150.jpg

Associated poll

More: continued here

Thousands enjoy Festival in the Park, Holiday Flotilla

Monday, November 30th, 2009

Video

Body

Before the boats set sail for the big flotilla, thousands gathered for a Festival in the Park at Wrightsville beach Saturday. The 26th Annual North Carolina Holiday Flotilla draws a big crowd every year.

This year’s edition featured more than 80 vendors, a classic car show, plenty of food and lots of contests and activities for the kids. One of the biggest stars of this year’s event was the beautiful fall weather.

“It is a great turnout, the weather, its not raining. We’re so happy that the sun is out. A great turnout, everyone seems like they’re having a blast. There’s a lot of people here and everybody’s getting ready for the boat parade tonight,” said Festival in the Park Chair Michelle Clark.

Former major league baseball player and New Hanover High star Trot Nixon was on hand to take photos and sign autographs.

“I’ve been to the night stuff quite a bit, but during the day I’ve never been down here – but it’s pretty cool down here, it’s a great time,” said Nixon.

This year’s festival drew an estimated six thousand people. Of course, the big draw in Wrightsville Beach was the flotilla itself.

For the second year in a row, Paula Sturdy and Van Marr won Best in Show on the Reel Hot.

This year their theme was “Santa’s Flight Under Twin Moonlights”, winning them a four-night stay in the Bahamas.

Best Powerboat Longer than 26 Feet went to Skip Wilson aboard The Bottom Line, with his “Wizard of Oz” theme.

Eric Erberhardt’s Gary Nell won Best Powerboat Less than 26 Feet with the theme “Santa’s Guide to Wrightsville Beach.”

“Charlie Brown Christmas” earned Seldom Seen the Best Sailboat Award for Steve and Christy Sutton. And the Best Costumes and Crew Spirit Award went to Steve Arnold aboard The Wendy Lee Two and the theme “Fishing for Christmas.”

Story image

flotilla300.jpg

Story summary

Before the boats set sail for the big flotilla, thousands gathered for a Festival in the Park at Wrightsville beach Saturday. The 26th Annual North Carolina Holiday Flotilla draws a big crowd every year.

Story summary image

flotilla150.jpg

Associated poll

More: continued here

NC burley tobacco market opens Tuesday

Monday, November 30th, 2009

Video

Body

ASHEVILLE — North Carolina’s burley tobacco growers may have just one place to sell their product this season.

The Asheville Citizen-Times reported that Planters Tobacco Warehouse in Asheville will open Tuesday. Warren Anders operates the warehouse and says he expects representatives of a nonprofit cooperative to attend, along with possibly two or three other buyers.

Another large warehouse appears to have closed.

Burley tobacco usually makes up about a third of a cigarette. It grows better in the mountains, where cooler nights and foggy mornings in the fall help it retain the desired moisture.

A federal buyout of the tobacco price support program went into effect in 2005 and since then the number of burley tobacco growers has dropped significantly.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Story image

Story summary

North Carolina’s burley tobacco growers may have just one place to sell their product this season.

Story summary image

Associated poll

More: continued here

Commercial real estate market struggling in Southeastern North Carolina

Monday, November 30th, 2009

By Wayne Faulkner,Wayne.Faulkner@StarNewsOnline.com

Too many warehouses, offices and retail spaces sit empty in the Wilmington area, say local commercial real estate brokers.

More: continued here

‘Tis the season to give blood

Monday, November 30th, 2009

Body

“A lot of people are scared of needles, but when you do it, just think about you’re helping somebody else,” said blood donor Stacey Riley.

Last year, Stacey had a blood transfusion that saved her life. Since then, she has been giving thanks, and now she’s giving blood.

“It’s a good way to give back so I figured that’s the perfect opportunity for me to do it for the first time,” added Riley.

Riley gave her blood on Friday to kick off the annual Tired of the Turkey Blood Drive. The process is simple, and takes about an hour. First you have a mini-physical, your blood is drawn for about 10 minutes, and then you get to eat cookies.

“Its a great way to give thanks and to save other peoples lives while you’re doing this,” said American Red Cross’ Shannon Jordan.

The Red Cross says each donation could help save up to three lives. In just 24 hours, the blood you donate could be transferred to a hospital, then onto a needy patient.

While there is always a great need for blood donations, the Red Cross says that during the holidays that need is even greater.

“The increase for blood is huge during the holidays because you have incidents that happen. You have higher car wrecks, you have people more people frying turkeys, people are standing on laddes,” added Jordan.

The drive runs through the end of this week. All donors get cookies, a free McDonald’s sandwich and a holiday ornament as a thank you.

If you would like to donate, you can stop by the Red Cross on 16th Street in Wilmington or call to make an appointment at 254-GIVE.

Story image

bloodedrive300.jpg

Story summary

videoSome people in Wilmington started the weekend and holiday season by literally giving of themselves. The American Red Cross saw a big turnout for the start of its annual Tired of the Turkey Blood Drive.

Story summary image

bloodedrive150.jpg

Associated poll

More: continued here

 

Archives

News provided by WWAY NewsChannel 3 and the StarNewsOnline

|Home| |Events| |Attractions| |Accommodations| |Restaurants| |Golf| |Beaches| |Jobs| |Getting Here| |Climate| |Directory| |News| |Advertise| |Contact Us|

 
 
  Welcome to Wilmington, North Carolina