Application of Spectral Polarimetry to a Hailstorm at Low Elevation Angle
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Application of Spectral Polarimetry to a Hailstorm at Low Elevation Angle

  • Published Date:

    2019

  • Source:
    J. Atmos. Oceanic Technol. (2019) 36 (4): 567–583.
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  • Description:
    Spectral polarimetry has the potential to be used to study microphysical properties in relation to the dynamics within a radar resolution volume by combining Doppler and polarimetric measurements. The past studies of spectral polarimetry have focused on using radar measurements from higher elevation angles, where both the size sorting from the hydrometeors’ terminal velocities and polarimetric characteristics are maintained. In this work, spectral polarimetry is applied to data from the 0° elevation angle, where polarimetric properties are maximized. Radar data collected by the C-band University of Oklahoma Polarimetric Radar for Innovations in Meteorology and Engineering (OU-PRIME) during a hailstorm event on 24 April 2011 are used in the analysis. The slope of the spectral differential reflectivity exhibits interesting variations across the hail core, which suggests the presence of size sorting of hydrometeors caused by vertical shear in a turbulent environment. A nearby S-band polarimetric Weather Surveillance Radar-1988 Doppler (KOUN) is also used to provide insights into this hailstorm. Moreover, a flexible numerical simulation is developed for this study, in which different types of hydrometeors such as rain and melting hail can be considered individually or as a combination under different sheared and turbulent conditions. The impacts of particle size distribution, shear, turbulence, attenuation, and mixture of rain and melting hail on polarimetric spectral signatures are investigated with the simulated Doppler spectra and spectral differential reflectivity.
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