50 years ago, scientists were getting a better glimpse inside storms

Into the eye of a storm

it has been said, too often are forced to combine inadequate observations with
unsupportable assumptions…. To draw more information from the atmosphere and
the hearts of storms, meteorologists are turning to a host of electronic aids.
Laser beams, microwaves and sound, radio and infrared waves are all being used.


Improvements to radar and satellite t­echnologies have enhanced researchers’ abilities to forecast severe storms. Data collected from airplanes flying through hurricanes and thunderstorms have helped clarify how the storms form and provided insights into the strength and speed of storm winds. In the early 2010s, the U.S. radar network, which tracks nationwide storm a­ctivity, added dual-polarized radar t­echnology to strengthen estimates for rain or snowfall in locations across the United States. In terms of satellites, GOES-16, launched by the United States in 2016, provides images at four times better resolution than previous GOES satellites.