Read about the different research themes being studied by the COastal METeorology (COMET) Lab at LSU. Each topic lists the basic questions we're trying to answer, and the places we're studying them. See a list of our recent publications.

Coastal Meteorology

Louisiana: What happens when coastal regions experience flooding from heavy rainfall and storm surge simultaneously? How should engineers best represent precipitation associated with idealized tropical systems while modeling storm surge?precipitation map using IPET parametric model

Hypothetical precipitation map for Hurricane Katrina based purely on central pressure, wind speed and direction of motion

Puerto Rico: How can we better forecast seasonal thunderstorm activity in the tropics? How will Caribbean precipitation respond to changes in trans-Atlantic dust transport? What caused the historic 2015 Puerto Rico drought?

Distribution of radar echoes in Puerto Rico

Map of annual radar-detected convective showers over Puerto Rico (Miller et al. 2019)

Southeast U.S.: Where do atmospheric rivers most often impact the Gulf and Atlantic coastlines? What upper-level atmospheric patterns support these events? How many atmospheric rivers ultimately produce prolific precipitation over the Southeast U.S.?

Distribution of atmospheric rivers along the Gulf and East coasts of the U.S.

Frequency of atmospheric river interactions with Southeast U.S. coastline (Debbage et al. 2017)


Disorganized Thunderstorms

Southeast U.S.: What controls the formation of weakly forced thunderstorms in the Southeast U.S.? How often do these storms produce severe weather? How much precipitation do they contribute to the annual hydroclimate and how will this change in the future?

Distribution of thunderstorm activity over Southeast U.S.Climatology of weakly forced thunderstorm activity over Southeast U.S. from 2001-2015 (Miller and Mote 2016)


Severe Weather

Southeast U.S.: How can lightning patterns serve as a severe weather precursor? What convective forecasting parameters are the best indicators of severe weather potential? How many weakly forced thunderstorms ultimately produce severe weather, and where does this happen most often?

Distribution of pulse thunderstorms across Southeast U.S.Distribution of WFT days and pulse thunderstorm days across Southeast U.S. (Miller and Mote 2018)



Land-Atmosphere Interactions

Puerto Rico & Georgia: Can catastrophic tree damage during hurricanes trigger longer-lasting weather changes? How long does it take the landscape to return to normal? Should hurricane preparedness strategies account for persistent precipitation changes after the initial landfall?

Comparison of pre- versus post-Maria cloud cover in Puerto Rico

Comparison of pre-Maria landscape and cloud activity versus after the catastrophic defoliation (Miller et al. 2019)