Tina Laboy came to CMMAP for the summer from Millersville University. She
is a sophomore there majoring in meteorology with a minor in computer science.
While at CMMAP, Tina worked under Professor Eric Maloney studying the
Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO).
The MJO is a cycle of anomalous tropical wind and precipitation that starts in
the Indian Ocean and propagates eastward into the Pacific Ocean. Variability is
dominated by 30-60 day timescales. The processes that cause the MJO to propagate
eastward are not well understood. Maloney et al. (2010) argued that zonal
moisture advection is important to the eastward propagation of the MJO, and that
advection of anomalous humidity by the background low-level zonal wind is
integral to this propagation.
In her summer research, Tina used NCEP reanalysis winds to show that MJO
propagation does not speed up when background zonal winds in the warm pool
increase. In fact, propagation speed and background low-level zonal winds are
significantly negatively correlated. Further, she found that while the strength
of intraseasonal zonal moisture advection increases with MJO amplitude, MJO
amplitude and zonal moisture advection strength show no significant relationship
to MJO propagation speed. Other factors such as surface evaporation anomalies
may help mediate MJO propagation speed. Understanding MJO propagation could
advance the MJO and tropical cyclone forecasts on weekly timescales.
Tina's research interests include hurricanes and radar. She enjoys movies,
music, reading, singing, star-gazing, and, as no suprise, cloud-watching.
Tina's research poster,
Investigating How Background State Affects The Propagation of The MJO, is
here (12MB PDF).