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Stormchasers Hunt Tornadoes for Science
Getty photographer Drew Angerer joined a group of researchers chasing supercell thunderstorms to see how tornadoes form.
Meteorologists from the Center for Severe Weather Research began their annual field research project this week, pursuing supercell storms and watching for the formation of tornadoes. A supercell--usually, but not necessarily, a thunderstorm--contains a deep and persistent rotating updraft called a mesocyclone.
Above: A meteorologist on the team watches as a supercell thunderstorm bears down on the area on May 9, 2017 in Lamb County, Texas.
Tim Marshall looks out the window of a tornado scout vehicle as the group tracks a supercell thunderstorm in Quanah, Texas.
Marshall became interested in weather after an F-4 tornado passed about a half-mile from his home in Oak Lawn, Illinois, when he was ten years old. The 1967 tornado killed 33 people and injured 500.
Center for Severe Weather Research intern Hunter Anderson prepares tornado pods as a severe thunderstorm moves into the area in Paducah, Texas.
The storm did not produce a tornado, but the group was prepared to deploy the pods if one developed. The pods are heavy, metal discs with instruments that measure and map winds at ground level.
A supercell thunderstorm develops in Elbert County outside of Limon, Colo.