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UCAR Team Recognized for Rip Current Visualizations

September 30, 2005

BOULDER—A Web development team from UCAR's Cooperative Program for Operational Meteorology, Education and Training (COMET) won an honorable mention in a contest sponsored by Science Magazine and the National Science Foundation. The team's entry in the noninteractive multimedia category of the Science and Engineering Visualization Challenge, titled Rip Currents: Nearshore Fundamentals, is an online, animated guide to the science of rip currents.

The contest celebrates the tradition of illustrating science with images, drawings, and animated presentations.

Rip Currents: Nearshore Fundamentals helps users answer the question: Is it safe to go in the water? The COMET team developed the module for a broad audience that includes weather forecasters, researchers, and students. It provides a three-dimensional look at how rip currents form above and below the water's surface, with computer-generated breaking waves and capping sea foam. Topics covered include circulation and waves, rip current characteristics, and the forces that shape the currents.

Rip Current Structure
The award-winning COMET training module includes three-dimensional graphics and animations like this one showing the effect on rip currents of variations in the angle at which waves approach a beach. Click here or on the image to launch the animation. (Illustration © The COMET Program.)

Related sites on the World Wide Web 

Rip Currents: Nearshore Fundamentals
The Science and Engineering Visualization Challenge
Science Magazine Special Feature

The National Center for Atmospheric Research and UCAR Office of Programs are operated by UCAR under the sponsorship of the National Science Foundation and other agencies. Opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication do not necessarily reflect the views of any of UCAR's sponsors.

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