Changes in the Nature of Fluctuations of Temperature and Liquid Water Content During the Lifetime of a Large-Scale Storm

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  • 1 Air Force Geophysics Laboratory, Hanscom AFB, MA 01731
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Abstract

The results of a spectral analysis of the horizontal fluctuations in temperature and liquid water content measured by instrumented aircraft at four altitudes daily during four days in the life-cycle of a storm moving eastward across the United States are discussed, along with a synoptic analysis of the storm. The storm itself was typical of the large scale systems travelling across the continent during the winter season.

Each stage of the storm (development, maturity and dissipation) exhibited distinctive spectral characteristics. In addition, the evidence that the age and previous history of the system greatly affect the fluctuation spectra is strong.

The results of this study support the thesis of a characteristic spectral signature for cloud systems, as well as for single clouds. This method may be used to determine the present growth stage of a storm system, and its potential for future development.

Abstract

The results of a spectral analysis of the horizontal fluctuations in temperature and liquid water content measured by instrumented aircraft at four altitudes daily during four days in the life-cycle of a storm moving eastward across the United States are discussed, along with a synoptic analysis of the storm. The storm itself was typical of the large scale systems travelling across the continent during the winter season.

Each stage of the storm (development, maturity and dissipation) exhibited distinctive spectral characteristics. In addition, the evidence that the age and previous history of the system greatly affect the fluctuation spectra is strong.

The results of this study support the thesis of a characteristic spectral signature for cloud systems, as well as for single clouds. This method may be used to determine the present growth stage of a storm system, and its potential for future development.

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