Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Brown, Michael

Committee Member

Dyer, Jamie

Committee Member

Dixon, Paul

Date of Degree


Document Type

Graduate Thesis - Open Access

Degree Name

Master of Science


Tornado research conducted across the southeastern United States suggests two peak tornado maxima. However, few studies have distinguished between the thermodynamic and shear environments between cool-season and warm-season tornadoes. Incorporating 100 mb mixed layer parcels, mean thermodynamic and shear parameters for non-significant (F0?F1) and significant (F2?F5) tornado environments were calculated. Cool-season tornado environments were characterized by relatively low amounts of instability and high shear. On the other hand, warm-season tornado events were characterized by higher amounts of instability and generally less shear. The Energy Helicity Index (EHI) remained nearly constant suggesting a balance of instability and shear between the tested seasons. During the cool-season, an increase in instability appears to distinguish between tornado strengths. Yet, an increase in shear during the warm-season may be indicative of significant tornado environments.