A Comparison of the Characteristics of Total and Cloud-to-Ground Lightning Activities in Hailstorms

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  • Funds:

    Supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (41030960 and 41105122), Project for Integration and Application of Meteorological Key Technology by the China Meteorological Administration (CAMGJ2012M78), and National Science and Technology Support Program of China (2008BAC36B04).

  • doi: 10.1007/s13351-013-0212-x

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  • The region of Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei is covered by two different lightning detection networks: SAFIR (Systeme d'Alerte Fondre par Interferometrie Radioelecctrique) for total lightning, including IntraCloud (IC) flashes and Cloud-to-Ground (CG) flashes, and the ADTD (ADvanced TOA and Direction system; TOA denotes time of arrival) network of China for CG lightning. Fourteen isolated hail-bearing thunderstorms in this region were examined in this study, using the data of SAFIR and ADTD. The peak of lightning frequency, for both total lightning and CG lightning, was often observed in advance of the occurrence of hailstones on the ground, with a trend of a rapid increase of lightning frequency before the hail was reported. The average lead times of the two types of lightning jump before hail events were obtained (total lightning: 32.2 min; CG: 25.4 min) through the 2? lightning jump algorithm. Additionally, in hailstorms with a high ratio of positive CG flashes, the diameter of hail was larger and the duration of hail was longer; when negative CG flashes dominated, the diameter of hail was relatively small. The comparison of the characteristics of total lightning and CG flashes in hailstorms in this study is expected to serve as a supplementary tool for hail forecasting.
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    沈阳化工大学材料科学与工程学院 沈阳 110142

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A Comparison of the Characteristics of Total and Cloud-to-Ground Lightning Activities in Hailstorms

  • 1. State Key Laboratory of Severe Weather,Chinese Academy of Meteorological Sciences,Beijing 100081;
    State Key Laboratory of Severe Weather,Chinese Academy of Meteorological Sciences,Beijing 100081;
    State Key Laboratory of Severe Weather,Chinese Academy of Meteorological Sciences,Beijing 100081;
    State Key Laboratory of Severe Weather,Chinese Academy of Meteorological Sciences,Beijing 100081;
    State Key Laboratory of Severe Weather,Chinese Academy of Meteorological Sciences,Beijing 100081
Funds: Supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (41030960 and 41105122), Project for Integration and Application of Meteorological Key Technology by the China Meteorological Administration (CAMGJ2012M78), and National Science and Technology Support Program of China (2008BAC36B04).

Abstract: The region of Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei is covered by two different lightning detection networks: SAFIR (Systeme d'Alerte Fondre par Interferometrie Radioelecctrique) for total lightning, including IntraCloud (IC) flashes and Cloud-to-Ground (CG) flashes, and the ADTD (ADvanced TOA and Direction system; TOA denotes time of arrival) network of China for CG lightning. Fourteen isolated hail-bearing thunderstorms in this region were examined in this study, using the data of SAFIR and ADTD. The peak of lightning frequency, for both total lightning and CG lightning, was often observed in advance of the occurrence of hailstones on the ground, with a trend of a rapid increase of lightning frequency before the hail was reported. The average lead times of the two types of lightning jump before hail events were obtained (total lightning: 32.2 min; CG: 25.4 min) through the 2? lightning jump algorithm. Additionally, in hailstorms with a high ratio of positive CG flashes, the diameter of hail was larger and the duration of hail was longer; when negative CG flashes dominated, the diameter of hail was relatively small. The comparison of the characteristics of total lightning and CG flashes in hailstorms in this study is expected to serve as a supplementary tool for hail forecasting.

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