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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-2019-31
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2019-31
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 25 Jan 2019

Research article | 25 Jan 2019

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This discussion paper is a preprint. A revision of the manuscript is under review for the journal Atmospheric Measurement Techniques (AMT).

Polarimetric radar characteristics of lightning initiation and propagating channels

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. In this paper we present an analysis of a large dataset of lightning and polarimetric weather radar data collected 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. The main objective of the campaign was to study the atmospheric conditions leading to lightning production with particular focus on the lightning discharges generated due to the presence of the 124 m tall Säntis telecommunications tower. In this paper we relate LMA VHF sources data with co-located radar data in order to characterize the main features (location, timing, polarimetric signatures, etc.) of both the flash's origin and its propagation path. We provide this type of analysis first for the whole data and then we separate the datasets into intra-cloud and cloud-to-ground flashes (and within this category positive and negative flashes) and also upward lightning. We show that polarimetric weather radar data can be helpful in determining regions were lightning is more likely to occur but that lightning climatology and/or knowledge of the orography and man-made structures is also relevant.

Jordi Figueras i Ventura et al.
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Short summary
This paper presents an analysis of a large dataset of lightning and polarimetric weather radar data collected 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. We show that polarimetric weather radar data can be helpful in determining regions where lightning is more likely to occur which is a first step towards a lightning nowcasting system.
This paper presents an analysis of a large dataset of lightning and polarimetric weather radar...
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