• Alpert, P., , and T. Reisin, 1986: An early winter polar air mass penetration to the eastern Mediterranean. Mon. Wea. Rev., 114 , 14111418.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Alpert, P., , B. U. Neeman, , and Y. Shay-El, 1990: Climatological analysis of Mediterranean cyclones using ECMWF data. Tellus, 42A , 6577.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Altaratz, O., 1997: On the relationship between meteorological parameters and lightning flashes as measured by radar and lightning detection systems (in Hebrew). M.S. thesis, Dept. of Geophysics and Planetary Sciences, Tel Aviv University, 97 pp.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Altaratz, O., , Z. Levin, , and Y. Yair, 2001: Winter thunderstorms in Israel: A study with lightning location systems and weather radar. Mon. Wea. Rev., 129 , 12591266.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Ashbel, D., 1938: Great floods in Sinai Peninsula, Palestine, Syria and the Syrian desert, and the influence of the Red Sea on their formation. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 64 , 635639.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Berger, K., , R. B. Anderson, , and H. Kroninger, 1975: Parameters of lightning flashes. Electra, 41 , 2337.

  • Biswas, K. R., , and P. V. Hobbs, 1990: Lightning over the Gulf stream. Geophys. Res. Lett., 17 , 941943.

  • Boccippio, D. J., , S. J. Goodman, , and S. Heckman, 2000: Regional differences in tropical lightning distributions. J. Appl. Meteor., 39 , 22312248.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Brooks, M., , M. Nakano, , P. Krehbiel, , and T. Takeuti, 1982: The electrical structure of the Hokuriku winter thunderstorms. J. Geophys. Res., 87 (C2) 12071215.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Christian, H. J., and Coauthors. 1999: Global frequency and distribution of lightning as observed by the optical transient detector (OTD). Proc. 11th Int. Conf. on Atmospheric Electricity, Huntsville, AL, NASA, 726–729.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Cummins, K. L., , M. J. Murphy, , E. A. Bardo, , W. L. Hiscox, , R. B. Pyle, , and A. E. Pifer, 1998: A combined TOA/MDF technology upgrade of the U.S. National Lighting Detection Network. J. Geophys. Res., 103 (D8) 90359044.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Dayan, U., , B. Ziv, , A. Margalit, , E. Morin, , and D. Sharon, 2001: A severe autumn storm over the Middle-East: Synoptic and mesoscale convection analysis. Theor. Appl. Climatol., 69 , 103122.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Ezcurra, A., , J. Areitio, , and I. Herrero, 2002: Relationships between cloud-to-ground lightning and surface rainfall during 1992–1996 in the Spanish Basque country area. Atmos. Res., 61 , 239250.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Finke, U., , and T. Hauf, 1996: The characteristics of lightning occurrence in southern Germany. Beitr. Phys. Atmos., 69 , 361374.

  • Füllekrug, M., , C. Price, , Y. Yair, , and E. R. Williams, 2002: Intense oceanic lightning. Ann. Geophys., 20 , 133137.

  • Furshpan, A., 1997: The influence of topography on the coastal circulation and precipitation distribution during winter rain events in Israel (in Hebrew). M.S. thesis, Dept. of Atmospheric Sciences, The Hebrew University, 73 pp.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Goldreich, Y., 1998: The Climate of Israel. Bar Ilan University Press, 292 pp.

  • Harel, M., , A. Melnikov, , and D. Shain, 1996: Description and morphology of lightning in Israel (in Hebrew). Tech. Rep. to the Ministry of Energy, 45 pp.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Hojo, J., , M. Ishii, , T. Kawamura, , F. Suzuki, , H. Komuro, , and M. Shiogama, 1989: Seasonal variation of cloud-to-ground lightning flash characteristics in the coastal area in the Sea of Japan. J. Geophys. Res., 94 , 1320713212.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Jayarante, E. R., , C. P. R. Saunders, , and J. Hallet, 1983: Laboratory studies of the charging of soft hail during ice crystal interactions. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 109 , 609630.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kahana, R., , B. Ziv, , Y. Enzel, , and U. Dayan, 2002: Synoptic climatology of major floods in the Negev Desert, Israel. Int. J. Climatol., 22 , 867882.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kalnay, E., and Coauthors. 1996: The NCEP/NCAR 40-Year Reanalysis Project. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 77 , 437471.

  • Khain, A. P., , D. Rosenfeld, , and I. L. Sednev, 1993: Coastal effects in the eastern Mediterranean as seen from experiments using a cloud ensemble model with detailed description of warm and ice microphysical processes. Atmos. Res., 30 , 295319.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kistler, R., and Coauthors. 2001: The NCEP–NCAR 50-year reanalysis: Monthly means CD-ROM and documentation. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 82 , 247267.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kitagawa, N., , and K. Michimoto, 1994: Meteorological and electrical aspects of winter thunderclouds. J. Geophys. Res., 99 (D5) 1071310721.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Levin, Z., , Y. Yair, , and B. Ziv, 1996: Positive cloud-to-ground flashes and wind shear in Tel-Aviv thunderstorms. Geophys. Res. Lett., 23 , 22312234.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • MacGorman, D. R., , and W. D. Rust, 1998: The Electrical Nature of Storms. Oxford University Press, 422 pp.

  • Mackerras, D., 1985: Automatic short-range measurement of the cloud flash to ground in thunderstorms. J. Geophys. Res., 90 , 61956201.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Norville, K., , M. Baker, , and J. Latham, 1991: A numerical study of thunderstorm electrification: Model development and case study. J. Geophys. Res., 96 (D4) 74637481.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Orville, R. E., 1981: Global distribution of midnight lightning September to November 1977. Mon. Wea. Rev., 109 , 391395.

  • Orville, R. E., , and R. W. Henderson, 1986: Global distribution of midnight lightning: September 1977 to August 1978. Mon. Wea. Rev., 114 , 26402653.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Orville, R. E., , and G. R. Huffines, 1999: Lightning ground flash measurements over the contiguous United States: 1995–97. Mon. Wea. Rev., 127 , 26932703.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Orville, R. E., , R. A. Weisman, , R. B. Pyle, , R. W. Henderson, , and R. E. Orville Jr., 1987: Cloud-to-ground lightning flash characteristics from June 1984 through May 1985. J. Geophys. Res., 92 , 56405644.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Orville, R. E., and Coauthors. 2001: Enhancement of cloud-to-ground lightning over Houston, Texas. Geophys. Res. Lett., 28 , 25972600.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Orville, R. E., , G. R. Huffines, , W. R. Burrows, , R. L. Holle, , and K. L. Cummins, 2002: The North American Lightning Detection Network (NALDN)—First results: 1998–2000. Mon. Wea. Rev., 130 , 20982109.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Pinto Jr., O., , R. B. B. Gin, , I. R. C. A. Pinto, , O. Mendes Jr., , J. H. Diniz, , and A. M. Carvalho, 1996: Cloud-to-ground lightning flash characteristics in southeastern Brazil for the 1992–1993 summer season. J. Geophys. Res., 101 (D23) 2962729635.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Price, C., , and D. Rind, 1993: What determines the cloud-to-ground lightning fraction in thunderstorms? Geophys. Res. Lett., 20 , 463466.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Randell, S. C., , S. A. Rutledge, , R. D. Farley, , and J. H. Helsdon, 1994: A modeling study on the early electrical development of tropical convection: Continental and oceanic (monsoon) storms. Mon. Wea. Rev., 122 , 18521877.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Reynolds, S. E., , M. Brook, , and M. F. Gourley, 1957: Thunderstorms charge separation. J. Meteor., 14 , 426436.

  • Rogers, R. R., , and M. K. Yau, 1989: A Short Course in Cloud Physics. Pergamon Press, 293 pp.

  • Rosenfeld, D., 1986: The dynamical characteristics of mesoscale rain cloud systems and their rain production (in Hebrew). Ph.D. thesis, The Hebrew University, 144 pp.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Seity, Y., , S. Soula, , and H. Sauvageot, 2000: Radar observation and lightning detection in coastal thunderstorms. Phys. Chem. Earth, 25 , 1012.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Sharon, D., , and B. Ronberg, 1988: Intra-annual weather fluctuation during the rainy season in Israel. Recent Climatic Change—A Regional Approach, S. Gregory, Ed., Belhaven Press, 102–115.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Shay-El, Y., , and P. Alpert, 1991: A diagnostic study of winter diabatic heating in the Mediterranean in relation to cyclones. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 117 , 715747.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Solomon, R., , and M. Baker, 1994: Electrification of New Mexico thunderstorms. Mon. Wea. Rev., 122 , 18781888.

  • Steiger, S. M., , R. E. Orville, , and G. Huffines, 2002: Cloud-to-ground lightning characteristics over Houston, Texas: 1989–2000. J. Geophys. Res., 107 .. 4117, doi:10.1029/2001JD001142.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Takahashi, T., 1984: Thunderstorm electrification—A numerical study. J. Atmos. Sci., 41 , 25412558.

  • Takahashi, T., , T. Tajiri, , and Y. Sonoi, 1999: Charges on graupel and snow crystals and the electrical structure of winter thunderstorms. J. Atmos. Sci., 56 , 15611578.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Turman, B. N., , and B. C. Edgar, 1982: Global lightning distributions at dawn and dusk. J. Geophys. Res., 87 , 11911206.

  • Ushio, T., , S. J. Heckman, , D. J. Boccippio, , H. J. Christian, , and Z-I. Kawasaki, 2001: A survey of thunderstorm flash rates compared to cloud top height using TRMM satellite data. J. Geophys. Res., 106 , 2408924095.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Whipple, F. J. W., , and F. J. Scrase, 1936: Point discharge in the electric field of the earth. Geophys. Mem., 68 (7) 120.

  • Williams, E. R., 1989: The tripole structure of thunderstorms. J. Geophys. Res., 94 , 1315113167.

  • Williams, E. R., 1992: The Schumann resonance: A global tropical thermometer. Science, 256 , 11841187.

  • Williams, E. R., , K. Rothkin, , D. Stevenson, , and D. Boccippio, 2000: Global lightning variations caused by changes in thunderstorm flash rate and by changes in the number of thunderstorms. J. Appl. Meteor., 39 , 22232230.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Yair, Y., , Z. Levin, , and O. Altaratz, 1998: Lightning phenomenology in the Tel Aviv area from 1989 to 1996. J. Geophys. Res., 103 , 90159025.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Ziegler, C. L., , D. R. MacGorman, , P. S. Ray, , and J. E. Dye, 1991: A model evaluation of noninductive graupel-ice charging in the early electrification of a mountain thunderstorm. J. Geophys. Res., 96 , 1283312855.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Zipser, E. J., 1994: Deep cumulonimbus cloud systems in the Tropics with and without lightning. Mon. Wea. Rev., 122 , 18371851.

  • Zipser, E. J., , and K. Lutz, 1994: The vertical profile of radar reflectivity of convective cells: A strong indicator of storm intensity and lightning probability? Mon. Wea. Rev., 122 , 17511759.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 0 0 0
Full Text Views 170 170 15
PDF Downloads 133 133 21

Lightning Activity over Land and Sea on the Eastern Coast of the Mediterranean

View More View Less
  • 1 Department of Geophysics and Planetary Sciences, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel
  • | 2 Department of Life and Natural Sciences, The Open University of Israel, Tel Aviv, Israel
© Get Permissions Rent on DeepDyve
Restricted access

Abstract

This paper presents a study of the characteristics of lightning activity during the Cyprus low winter storms over the eastern coast of the Mediterranean. The focus is on changes in the nature of thunderstorms crossing the coastline from the sea into the northern and central parts of Israel, as manifested in their electrical activity. It is based on the Lightning Position and Tracking System (LPATS) measurements of lightning ground strikes during four winter seasons between 1995 and 1999. The spatial distribution shows a maximum of lightning ground strikes over Mount Carmel, possibly due to its topographical forcing. The annual variation shows a major maximum in January with two minor peaks, one in November and another in March, which can be explained by changes in the static instability of the atmosphere throughout the rainy period. The average fraction of positive ground flashes was found to be 6% and their average peak current +41 kA. The average peak current of negative ground flashes was −27 kA.

Larger frequencies of ground flashes were detected over the sea than over land during the study period. This is probably due to the large heat and humidity fluxes from the sea surface, which destabilize the colder air above and drive cloud convection. The annual distribution shows that during midwinter (December–January–February) there is higher flash density over the sea, while during autumn and spring the flash density is similar above the two regions.

The diurnal variation shows that the maximum in maritime lightning activity was at 0500 LST and over land at 1300 LST. The mean peak current of positive ground flashes was higher over land and of negative ground flashes, over the sea.

Corresponding author address: Prof. Zev Levin, Department of Geophysics and Planetary Science, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv 69978, Israel. Email: zev@hail.tau.ac.il

Abstract

This paper presents a study of the characteristics of lightning activity during the Cyprus low winter storms over the eastern coast of the Mediterranean. The focus is on changes in the nature of thunderstorms crossing the coastline from the sea into the northern and central parts of Israel, as manifested in their electrical activity. It is based on the Lightning Position and Tracking System (LPATS) measurements of lightning ground strikes during four winter seasons between 1995 and 1999. The spatial distribution shows a maximum of lightning ground strikes over Mount Carmel, possibly due to its topographical forcing. The annual variation shows a major maximum in January with two minor peaks, one in November and another in March, which can be explained by changes in the static instability of the atmosphere throughout the rainy period. The average fraction of positive ground flashes was found to be 6% and their average peak current +41 kA. The average peak current of negative ground flashes was −27 kA.

Larger frequencies of ground flashes were detected over the sea than over land during the study period. This is probably due to the large heat and humidity fluxes from the sea surface, which destabilize the colder air above and drive cloud convection. The annual distribution shows that during midwinter (December–January–February) there is higher flash density over the sea, while during autumn and spring the flash density is similar above the two regions.

The diurnal variation shows that the maximum in maritime lightning activity was at 0500 LST and over land at 1300 LST. The mean peak current of positive ground flashes was higher over land and of negative ground flashes, over the sea.

Corresponding author address: Prof. Zev Levin, Department of Geophysics and Planetary Science, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv 69978, Israel. Email: zev@hail.tau.ac.il

Save