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Evaluation of thunderstorm indices from ECMWF analyses, lightning data and severe storm reports

Kaltenböck, Rudolf and Diendorfer, Gerhard and Dotzek, Nikolai (2009) Evaluation of thunderstorm indices from ECMWF analyses, lightning data and severe storm reports. Atmospheric Research, 93 (1-3), pp. 381-396. Elsevier. DOI: 10.1016/j.atmosres.2008.11.005


Official URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/journal/01698095


This study describes the environmental atmospheric characteristics in the vicinity of different types of severe convective storms in Europe during the warm seasons in 2006 and 2007. 3406 severe weather events from the European SevereWeather Database ESWD were investigated to get information about different types of severe local storms, such as significant or weak tornadoes, large hail, damaging winds, and heavy precipitation. These data were combined with EUCLID (European Cooperation for Lightning Detection) lightning data to distinguish and classify thunderstorm activity on a European scale into seven categories: none, weak and 5 types of severe thunderstorms. Sounding parameters in close proximity to reported events were derived from daily high-resolution T799 ECMWF (European Centre for Medium-range Weather Forecasts) analyses. We found from the sounding-derived parameters in Europe: 1) Instability indices and CAPE have considerable skill to predict the occurrence of thunderstorms and the probability of severe events. 2) Low level moisture can be used as a predictor to distinguish between significant tornadoes or non-severe convection. 3) Most of the events associated with wind gusts during strong synoptic flow situations reveal the downward transport of momentum as a very important factor. 4) While deep-layer shear discriminates well between severe and non-severe events, the storm-relative helicity in the 0�1 km and especially in the 0�3 km layer adjacent to the ground has more skill in distinguishing between environments favouring significant tornadoes and wind gusts versus other severe events. Additionally, composite parameters that combine measurements of buoyancy, vertical shear and low level moisture have been tested to discriminate between severe events.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/59708/
Document Type:Article
Title:Evaluation of thunderstorm indices from ECMWF analyses, lightning data and severe storm reports
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthors ORCID iD
Kaltenböck, RudolfAustrocontrolUNSPECIFIED
Diendorfer, GerhardÖVEUNSPECIFIED
Journal or Publication Title:Atmospheric Research
Refereed publication:Yes
Open Access:Yes
Gold Open Access:No
In ISI Web of Science:Yes
DOI :10.1016/j.atmosres.2008.11.005
Page Range:pp. 381-396
Keywords:Thunderstorm, lightning, ECMWF, ESWD
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport (old)
HGF - Program:Space (old)
HGF - Program Themes:W EO - Erdbeobachtung
DLR - Research area:Space
DLR - Program:W EO - Erdbeobachtung
DLR - Research theme (Project):W - Vorhaben Atmosphären- und Klimaforschung (old)
Location: Oberpfaffenhofen
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Atmospheric Physics > Atmospheric Dynamics
Deposited By: Dotzek, Dr.rer.nat. Nikolai
Deposited On:27 Aug 2009 11:34
Last Modified:31 Jul 2019 19:25

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