Algorithm for Predicting High ice water content Areas (ALPHA)


An icing hazard receiving increased attention lately is that of the ingest of large amounts of ice crystals into jet engines, causing them to fail during flight. As of this time, no accidents have resulted, but encounters with regions having high ice water content (HIWC) continue, especially in tropical areas. A major research program investigating not just the weather conditions contributing to HIWC conditions but the actual melting/refreezing processes within jet engines has begun. NCAR’s role in this project is to develop warnings to keep pilots aware of and away from potentially hazardous regions. A preliminary version of NCAR’s Algorithm to Predict HIWC Areas (ALPHA) will be used to help guide a research aircraft into potential HIWC regions near Darwin, Australia.

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