Statistical Characteristics of Unsteady Storms in Radar Observations for the Beijing–Tianjin Region

Yu Wang Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, School of Physics, Peking University, Beijing, China

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Hong-Qing Wang Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, School of Physics, Peking University, Beijing, China

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Lei Han College of Information Science and Engineering, Ocean University of China, Qingdao, and State Key Laboratory of Severe Weather, Chinese Academy of Meteorological Sciences, Beijing, China

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Yin-Jing Lin National Meteorological Center of the China Meteorological Administration, Beijing, China

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Yan Zhang Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, School of Physics, Peking University, Beijing, China

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Abstract

This study was designed to provide basic information for the improvement of storm nowcasting. According to the mean direction deviation of storm movement, storms were classified into three types: 1) steady storms (S storms, extrapolated efficiently), 2) unsteady storms (U storms, extrapolated poorly), and 3) transitional storms (T storms). The U storms do not fit the linear extrapolation processes because of their unsteady movements. A 6-yr warm-season radar observation dataset was used to highlight and analyze the differences between U storms and S storms. The analysis included geometric features, dynamic factors, and environmental parameters. The results showed that storms with the following characteristics changed movement direction most easily in the Beijing–Tianjin region: 1) smaller storm area, 2) lower thickness (echo-top height minus base height), 3) lower movement speed, 4) weaker updrafts and the maximum value located in the mid- and upper troposphere, 5) storm-relative vertical wind profiles dominated by directional shear instead of speed shear, 6) lower relative humidity in the mid- and upper troposphere, and 7) higher surface evaporation and ground roughness.

Corresponding author address: Hong-Qing Wang, Dept. of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, School of Physics, Peking University, Beijing 100871, China. E-mail: hqwang@pku.edu.cn

Abstract

This study was designed to provide basic information for the improvement of storm nowcasting. According to the mean direction deviation of storm movement, storms were classified into three types: 1) steady storms (S storms, extrapolated efficiently), 2) unsteady storms (U storms, extrapolated poorly), and 3) transitional storms (T storms). The U storms do not fit the linear extrapolation processes because of their unsteady movements. A 6-yr warm-season radar observation dataset was used to highlight and analyze the differences between U storms and S storms. The analysis included geometric features, dynamic factors, and environmental parameters. The results showed that storms with the following characteristics changed movement direction most easily in the Beijing–Tianjin region: 1) smaller storm area, 2) lower thickness (echo-top height minus base height), 3) lower movement speed, 4) weaker updrafts and the maximum value located in the mid- and upper troposphere, 5) storm-relative vertical wind profiles dominated by directional shear instead of speed shear, 6) lower relative humidity in the mid- and upper troposphere, and 7) higher surface evaporation and ground roughness.

Corresponding author address: Hong-Qing Wang, Dept. of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, School of Physics, Peking University, Beijing 100871, China. E-mail: hqwang@pku.edu.cn
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