Sequim Science Cafe to explore precipitation study today

SEQUIM — A researcher will present findings of a study of precipitation on the North Olympic Peninsula today.

Angela Rowe — a scientist in the Department of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Washington — will present “OLYMPEX: A collaborative effort to study rain and snow on the Olympic Peninsula” at the next Science Café, at 6:30 p.m. today at the Paradise Restaurant, 703 N. Sequim Ave.

The free program will be hosted by the Sequim Education Foundation.

Scientists with the University of Washington and NASA conducted a project across the Olympic Peninsula this winter to measure rain and snow as storms moved from the ocean to the mountains.

During the project, Rowe rotated between the two weather radar sites.

The study required help from many quarters.

Volunteers placed rain gauges in their backyards. Mules carried instruments into Olympic National Park and weather radars recorded data on the Quinault Reservation and at Lake Quinault to help observers understand the processes leading to varied precipitation around the area.

Data and stories about the project will be presented to showcase the wealth of new information gained about the weather across the region and how data is being used to improve satellite measurements.

Growing up in Maryland, Rowe’s love of thunderstorms and snow led her to pursue a degree in meteorology, she said.

While earning her doctorate in Colorado, she used weather radar data to understand heavy rainfall in mountainous tropical regions.

After earning a degree, she moved to the Pacific Northwest where her desire to understand the effect of mountains on precipitation fueled her interest in OLYMPEX.

The Science Café is a community service of the Sequim Education Foundation.

Programs present expert speakers for adult and young adult audiences interested in current developments in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

Science Café events are held on the second Tuesday of the month at the Paradise Restaurant. Admission is free and food and beverages are available for purchase.

For more information about the Sequim Education Foundation, see www.sequimed.org.

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