NOAA Upper-Air Data Highlighted on "CSI: Miami" TV Episode
A Skew-T data plot from the NOAA Forecast System Laboratory's interactive sounding display provided a crucial clue in the final season episode of the popular TV show "CSI: Miami" that enabled the crime investigators to save Miami from a terrorist threat. The show aired Tuesday, May 22; see the CBS synopsis for details of the show and a picture of the Skew-T sounding as it was portrayed.
Although the implications of the single Skew-T sounding shown were distorted for dramatic effect, soundings from the FSL display are in fact used routinely by some cities to help with air quality forecasting, and could provide information about wind and atmospheric stability that would be very helpful in the event of a toxic release.
Greg Hernandez of the NOAA Public Affairs office provided the hard-copy Skew-T plot to the producers of the TV series. Dr. Bill Moninger, a physicist at FSL, developed the Web site, which shows soundings from several versions of the Rapid Update Cycle (RUC) model, profilers, radiosondes, radiometers, and aircraft.
Name: Rhonda K Lange