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Raindrop Spectra at the Ground

Douglas M. A. JonesChampaign, Illinois

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Abstract

Volume samples of raindrop spectra (26 865 m3) recorded at ten widely dispersed sites from the tropics to the Aleutian Islands yielded spectra with dominant modes in the range 0.8–1.6 mm. Peaks at the 0.9-mm diameter were found but were not significantly more frequent than other nearby sizes. Secondary peaks in the averaged spectra were detected for some rain-rate and site combinations but not uniformly in all samples.

This study provides an indication of the limits of the extent to which local peaks, resulting from size preferences during drop breakup, could be expected to be seen in data obtained with instruments of limited sample volumes.

Abstract

Volume samples of raindrop spectra (26 865 m3) recorded at ten widely dispersed sites from the tropics to the Aleutian Islands yielded spectra with dominant modes in the range 0.8–1.6 mm. Peaks at the 0.9-mm diameter were found but were not significantly more frequent than other nearby sizes. Secondary peaks in the averaged spectra were detected for some rain-rate and site combinations but not uniformly in all samples.

This study provides an indication of the limits of the extent to which local peaks, resulting from size preferences during drop breakup, could be expected to be seen in data obtained with instruments of limited sample volumes.

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