The Tropical Cloud Systems and Processes (TCSP) Mission is Underway

OverviewImage removed.High Resolution TCSP Logo available (click on the logo above) The Tropical Cloud Systems and Processes (TCSP) mission is a field research investigation sponsored by the Science Mission Directorate of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). The field experiment is tentatively scheduled for July 1-28, 2005 and is based out of San Jose, Costa Rica. TCSP builds on the success of previous Convection and Moisture Experiment (CAMEX) missions. TCSP is focused on the study of the dynamics and thermodynamics of precipitating cloud systems, including tropical cyclones using NASA-funded aircraft and surface remote sensing instrumentation. Targeted data sets will be collected using the NASA ER-2 research aircraft, in synergy with remote sensing observations provided by NASA and other agencies. These observations will be used to answer key questions pertaining to the origins and lifecycle of weather disturbances in the tropics. Hurricane DennisImage removed.ER-2 rolling out for a mission. TCSP had three flights of the ER-2 over Hurricane Dennis. Two of the flights were coordinated with the NOAA P3 (NOAA43) but the coordination time was short since the storm was a long ferry away. The first flight on July 5 was over a disorganized disturbance that was name Tropical Storm Dennis near flight time. The second flight on July 6 was during an intensifying stage of the storm. Strong convection was present in the inner core region and there was some microphysics coordination with NOAA43. The third flight on July 9 was during a mature Hurricane Dennis as it exited the north side of Cuba. There was no coordination for this flight, but both NOAA P3's were flying back-to-back missions covering some of the period of the ER-2 flight. Both NOAA aircraft left Costa Rica after July 9 to perform further flights on Dennis. They will arrive back in Costa Rica later today (NOAA42) and Thursday (NOAA43) to resume studies of tropical storm genesis in the eastern Pacific.