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Image - Watch a tornado

Image of the Week - Watch a tornado

Large-Eddy simulation of a tornado's interaction with the surface. Image courtesy Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center

Just what does the interior of a tornado look like as it swirls over the land?

To find out, researchers W.S. Lewellen, D.C. Lewellen and Aytekin Gel of West Virginia University made high resolution, fully 3-D simulations in an attempt to answer questions about the character of the turbulent eddies in this unique flow.

The following animated clip, made by Gel in close cooperation with the Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center's (PSC) Scientific-Visualization Group, uses particle advection to represent wind direction and isosurfaces to show pressure inside a 400 m x 400 m x 400 m domain from a simulation involving approximately 100 hours of a Cray C90 supercomputer at PSC.

As a resource provider in TeraGrid, a National Science Foundation program of coordinated cyberinfrastructure for education and research, PSC works with its TeraGrid partners to harness the full range of information technologies to enable discovery in U.S. science and engineering.

-Dan Drollette, iSGTW

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