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Extreme Wind Speed Data Sets: Directional Wind Speeds

3-s Gust Wind Speed Data at 10 m for 8 Directions This section contains the largest yearly peak 3-s gust wind speed data at 10 m above open terrain for each of eight directions: N, NE, E, SE, S, SW, W, and NW at 37 stations in the US over periods of approximately 15 to 30 years.

For 24 of the 37 sets, the data were obtained from the original NOAA records and are referred to here as "original" data; for the other 13 sets, the data were obtained from the Local Climatological Data monthly summaries and are referred to here as "published" data.

Hidden Values Local Climatological Data (LCD) monthly summaries include the largest daily wind speed data and the corresponding direction. On the date of this largest wind speed, another (lower and unpublished) value could have occurred from a different direction and actually exceeded the published annual extreme for that different direction. Since that value would not appear in the LCD summaries, it is referred to as a "hidden value."

The 24 "original" data sets have been corrected for possible "hidden values" by examining the original records.

Estimates based on the "hidden values" and on the corresponding published values show that in most cases the wind load statistics would be only modestly affected if the published values were used in calculations. The differences in the design wind loads are typically on the order of one percent. (See NBS Building Science Series 160.)

Non-Hurricane Data All data are based on fastest-mile National Weather Service data included in the report "Directional Extreme Wind Speed Data for the Design of Buildings and Other Structures" by M.J. Changery, E.J. Dumitriu-Valcea, and E. Simiu, NBS Building Science Series 160, U.S. Department of Commerce, National Bureau of Standards, Washington, D.C., March 1984.

All data were recorded at stations where hurricanes and tropical storms are not expected to occur. (It is also assumed that none of the data collected are a result of tornado winds.)

Structure of the Data Files The structure of each data file is as follows:
  • Line 1: City identifier and period of record
  • Line 2: Description of data
  • Line 3: Wind directions.
All subsequent lines contain the maximum yearly data for each of the eight directions.
Data from Original NOAA Records The following is the list of "original" directional data sets. You can also download all of the files as a single zip file. Note that if you unzip this file on a Unix/Linux platform, you should use the "zip -a" option in order to obtain the correct "LF/CR" convention.
Published Data (from Local Climatological Data) Summaries The following is the list of "published" directional data sets. You can also download all of the files as a single zip file. Note that if you unzip this file on a Unix/Linux platform, you should use the "zip -a" option in order to obtain the correct "LF/CR" convention.

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Date created: 05/02/2005
Last updated: 10/03/2016
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