Corey Potvin

I’m fascinated by the power and majesty of organized convective storms, and by our ability to observe and diagnose their complex, but ultimately intelligible, structure and evolution. My overarching scientific objectives are to improve (1) our understanding of the development and evolution of storms and tornadoes, and (2) numerical forecasts and public warnings of thunderstorm hazards.

Email:
Corey.Potvin@noaa.gov
Phone:
405-325-6674
Address:
NSSL/FRDD Rm 4378, 120 David L. Boren Boulevard, Norman, OK 73072

Research Interests

I’m primarily interested in the analysis, prediction, and predictability of supercell thunderstorms. During my graduate studies at the University of Oklahoma, I developed a multiple-Doppler technique for detecting and characterizing intense convective vortices, and investigated the capabilities of a vertical vorticity constraint and spatially variable advection correction to improve variational dual-Doppler retrievals of vertical velocity in convection. As a National Research Council postdoctoral associate at the NSSL, I examined and compared errors in close-range supercell wind retrievals from traditional and variational dual-Doppler analysis and ensemble Kalman Filter radar data assimilation. Since starting as a research scientist at CIMMS/NSSL, my work has been largely devoted to helping develop a prototype Warn-on-Forecast ensemble analysis/forecasting system. High-resolution probabilistic guidance from such systems will hopefully permit longer tornado warning lead times and fewer false alarms. My Warn-on-Forecast research has been roughly equally divided between (1) developing and testing techniques for use in convective-scale analysis and data assimilation, and (2) using numerical simulations to explore supercell predictability.

Curriculum Vitae

Corey K. Potvin (last updated Jan 2017)

Recent News

Jan 2017: Honored and thrilled to receive a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE)! OU News White House

Oct 2016: TACC wrote an article on Amy McGovern's tornadogenesis data mining work that I am collaborating on: TACC News. The article has been picked up by science news sites (e.g., phys.org) and Facebook pages.

May 2016: My work to examine the significance of "mini tornado alleys" (Broyles and Crosbie 2004) in the U.S. tornado climatology is mentioned in this article on the recent spate of Moore tornadoes: 538.com

Publications (23)

Supercell predictability

Potvin, C. K., E. M. Murillo, M. L. Flora, and D. M. Wheatley, 2017: Sensitivity of supercell simulations to initial-condition resolution. J. Atmos. Sci., 74, 5-26. DOI: 10.1175/JAS-D-16-0098.1.

Potvin, C. K., and M. L. Flora, 2015: Sensitivity of idealized supercell simulations to horizontal grid spacing: Implications for Warn-on-Forecast. Mon. Wea. Rev., 143, 2998-3024. DOI: 10.1175/MWR-D-14-00416.1.

Potvin, C. K., and L. J. Wicker, 2013: Assessing ensemble forecasts of low-level supercell rotation within an OSSE framework. Wea. and Forecasting, 28, 940-960. DOI: 10.1175/WAF-D-12-00122.1.

Storm-scale EnKF data assimilation and forecasting

Thompson, T. E., L. J. Wicker, X. Wang, and C. K. Potvin, 2015: A comparison between the local ensemble transform Kalman filter and the ensemble square root Kalman filter for the assimilation of radar data in convective-scale models. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 141, 1163–1176. DOI: 10.1002/qj.2423.

Potvin, C. K., and L. J. Wicker, 2013: Correcting fast-mode pressure errors in storm-scale ensemble Kalman filter analyses. Advances in Meteorology, 2013, 1-14. DOI: 10.1155/2013/624931.

Stensrud, D. J., and Co-authors, 2013: Progress and Challenges with Warn-on-Forecast. Atmos. Res., 123, 2-16. DOI: 0.1016/j.atmosres.2012.04.004.

Potvin, C. K., L. J. Wicker, M. I. Biggerstaff, D. Betten, and A. Shapiro, 2013: Comparison between dual-Doppler and EnKF storm-scale wind analyses: The 29-30 May 2004 Geary, Oklahoma, supercell thunderstorm. Mon. Wea. Rev., 141, 1612-1628. DOI: 10.1175/MWR-D-12-00308.1.

Potvin, C. K., and L. J. Wicker, 2012: Comparison between dual-Doppler and EnKF storm-scale wind analyses: Observing system experiments with a simulated supercell thunderstorm. Mon. Wea. Rev.., 140, 3972-3991. DOI: 10.1175/MWR-D-12-00044.1.

Variational dual-Doppler wind retrieval

Potvin, C. K., D. Betten, L. J. Wicker, K. L. Elmore, and M. I. Biggerstaff, 2012: 3DVAR vs. traditional dual-Doppler wind retrievals of a simulated supercell thunderstorm. Mon. Wea. Rev.., 140, 3487-3494. DOI: 10.1175/MWR-D-12-00063.1.

Potvin, C. K., L. J. Wicker, and A. Shapiro, 2012: Assessing dual-Doppler wind synthesis errors in supercell thunderstorms using OSS experiments. J. Atmos. Oceanic Technol., 29, 1009-1025. DOI: 10.1175/JTECH-D-11-00177.1.

Potvin, C. K., A. Shapiro, and M. Xue, 2012: Impact of a vertical vorticity constraint in variational dual-Doppler wind analysis: Tests with real and simulated supercell data. J. Atmos. Oceanic Technol., 29, 32-49. DOI: 10.1175/JTECH-D-11-00019.1.

Shapiro, A., C. K. Potvin, and J. Gao, 2009: Use of a vertical vorticity equation in variational dual-Doppler wind analysis. J. Atmos. Oceanic Technol., 26, 2089-2106. DOI: 10.1175/2010JAS3466.1 .

Vortex detection and characterization

Potvin, C. K., 2013: A variational method for detecting and characterizing intense vortices in Cartesian wind fields. Wea. and Forecasting, 141, 3102-3115. DOI: 10.1175/MWR-D-13-00015.1.

Potvin, C. K., A. Shapiro, M. I. Biggerstaff, and Joshua M. Wurman, 2011: The VDAC technique: A variational method for detecting and characterizing convective vortices in multiple-Doppler radar data. Mon. Wea. Rev., 139, 2593-2613. DOI: 10.1175/2011MWR3638.1.

Potvin, C. K., A. Shapiro, T.-Y. Yu, J. Gao, and M. Xue, 2009: Using a low-order model to detect and characterize tornadoes in multiple-Doppler radar data. Mon. Wea. Rev., 137, 1230-1249. DOI: 10.1175/2008MWR2446.1.

Storm analysis technique development

McGovern, A., C. K. Potvin, and R. A. Brown, 2017: Using large-scale machine learning to improve our understanding of the formation of tornadoes. Large-Scale Machine Learning in the Earth Sciences, CRC Press, in press.

Shapiro, A., S. Rahimi, C. K. Potvin, and L. Orf, 2015: On the use of advection correction in trajectory calculations. J. Atmos. Sci., 72, 4261-4280. DOI: 10.1175/JAS-D-15-0095.1.

Lakshmanan, V., K. Hondl, C. K. Potvin, and D. Preignitz, 2013: An improved method to compute radar echo top heights. Wea. and Forecasting, 28, 481-488. DOI: 10.1175/WAF-D-12-00084.1.

Shapiro, A., K. M. Willingham, and C. K. Potvin, 2010: Spatially variable advection correction of radar data. Part I: Theoretical considerations. J. Atmos. Sci., 67, 3445-3456. DOI: 10.1175/2010JAS3465.1.

Shapiro, A., K. M. Willingham, and C. K. Potvin, 2010: Spatially variable advection correction of radar data. Part II: Test results. J. Atmos. Sci., 67, 3457-3470. DOI: 10.1175/2010JAS3466.1 .

Tornado climatology

Potvin, C. K., C. Broyles, P. S. Skinner, and H. E. Brooks, 2017: Statistically modeling and removing reporting biases in the SPC tornado database. Manuscript in preparation.

Potvin, C. K., K. L. Elmore, and S. J. Weiss, 2010: Assessing the impacts of proximity sounding criteria on the climatology of significant tornado environments. Wea. and Forecasting, 25, 921-930. DOI: 10.1175/2010WAF2222368.1.

Supercell case studies

DiGangi, E. A., D. R. MacGorman, C. L. Ziegler, D. Betten, M. Biggerstaff, M. Bowlan, and C. K. Potvin, 2017: An overview of the 29 May 2012 Kingfisher supercell during DC3: Observations of the 29 May 2012 DC3 case. J. Geophys. Res.., 121, 14,316–14,343. DOI: 10.1002/2016JD025690.

Skinner, P. S., C. C. Weiss, L. J. Wicker, C. K. Potvin, and D. C. Dowell, 2015: Forcing mechanisms for an internal rear-flank downdraft momentum surge in the 18 May 2010 Dumas, Texas supercell. Mon. Wea. Rev., 143, 4305-4330. DOI: 10.1175/MWR-D-15-0164.1.