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Atmospheric Measurement Techniques An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2019-135
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2019-135
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 23 Apr 2019

Research article | 23 Apr 2019

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Atmospheric Measurement Techniques (AMT).

Analysis of the lightning production of convective cells

Jordi Figueras i Ventura1, Nicolau Pineda2,3, Nikola Besic1, Jacopo Grazioli1, Alessandro Hering1, Oscar A. van der Velde3, David Romero3, Antonio Sunjerga4, Amirhossein Mostajabi4, Mohammad Azadifar5, Marcos Rubinstein5, Joan Montanyà3, Urs Germann1, and Farhad Rachidi-Haeri4 Jordi Figueras i Ventura et al.
  • 1MeteoSwiss, Locarno, Switzerland
  • 2Meteorological Service of Catalonia, Barcelona, Spain
  • 3Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya UPC, Terrassa, Spain
  • 4École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne EPFL, Lausanne, Switzerland
  • 5Haute Ecole Spécialisée de Suisse occidentale HES-SO, Yverdon-les-bains, Switzerland

Abstract. This paper presents an analysis of the lightning production of convective cells. The cells were detected by the MeteoSwiss Thunderstorms Radar Tracking (TRT) algorithm in the course of a lightning measurement campaign that took place in the summer of 2017 in the area surrounding the Säntis mountain, in the northeastern part of Switzerland. For this campaign, and for the first time in the Alps, a Lightning Mapping Array (LMA) was deployed. In the first part of the paper, we examine the relationship between the intra-cloud (IC) and cloud-to-ground (CG) activity and the cell severity as derived by the TRT algorithm of a large dataset of cells gathered during the campaign. We also propose and analyze the performance of a new metric to quantify lightning intensity, the rimed particles column (RPC) height and base altitude. In the second part, we focus on two of the most severe cells detected during the campaign that produced significantly different outcomes in terms of the lightning activity. The paper shows that the newly proposed metric (RPC) seems to be a very promising predictor of lightning activity, particularly for IC flashes. Future lightning nowcasting algorithms in any case should be probabilistic in nature and incorporate the polarimetric properties of the convective cells as well as the lightning climatology.

Jordi Figueras i Ventura et al.
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Short summary
This paper presents an analysis of the lightning production of convective cells. Polarimetric weather radar data was used to identify and characterize the convective cells while lightning was detected using the EUCLID network and a lightning mapping array deployed during the summer of 2017 in the northeastern part of Switzerland. In it we show that there is a good correlation between the height of the rimed particles column and the intensity of the lightning activity in the convective cell.
This paper presents an analysis of the lightning production of convective cells. Polarimetric...
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