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January-February 2012

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Forecast Center

In this issue, we return to the Arctic once again, where one of the largest superstorms in almost 40 years struck Alaska just as this magazine went to press. The weather network is excellent where towns, shipping routes, and airfields are found, but these are very irregular throughout the Arctic basin, and it's normal for weather maps to have wide gaps. Readers unfortunately will not have the benefit of satellite observations, numerical model guidance, and radar to examine weather in those gaps, but with such a deep, large storm as this one, it's easy to find on the weather map.

TIM VASQUEZ is a former Air Force forecaster and author of Digital Atmosphere, a weather forecasting software program. He lives near Norman, Oklahoma, where he keeps busy as a weather consultant and software developer.

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