HailSTONE-2011 News and Notes
On 23 May 2011, HailSTONE (A Hail Spatial and Temporal Observing Network Effort) identified and measured a hail stone with a diameter that exceeded the previous record hail size in Oklahoma. The new state record stone was found 2 miles north of Gotebo, OK with a maximum diameter of 6 inches. This breaks all previous verifiable record stones in the state that photographic documentation existed.
The new record stone was produced from a long-lived supercell thunderstorm that tracked across western Oklahoma from Rocky to Apache. The HailSTONE group sampled the storm from development to dissipation, collecting and recording nearly 300 reports of varying hail sizes throughout the storm's life cycle. The extraordinarily giant size of the hail managed to significantly cave in the roof of one of the impact scout vehicles during operations. These data, along with many other cases collected during 2011, will be analyzed in the months and years to come.
HailSTONE is a privately funded, collaborative grassroots research effort among meteorologists and experienced storm chasers in the field to investigate large hail in space and time through direct mobile measurements. This ambitious coordinated project will produce some of the highest resolution hail data ever collected, providing a rare glimpse into the true hail-fall character of convective storms, and allowing for a meaningful bridge from research to operations. Questions about the project should be directed to Scott Blair and Derek Deroche on the provided contact form.