Lifetimes of Overshooting Convective Events Using High-Frequency Gridded Radar Composites

Daniel Jellis aTexas A&M University, College Station, Texas

Search for other papers by Daniel Jellis in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
https://orcid.org/0000-0002-0862-0453
,
Kenneth P. Bowman aTexas A&M University, College Station, Texas

Search for other papers by Kenneth P. Bowman in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
, and
Anita D. Rapp aTexas A&M University, College Station, Texas

Search for other papers by Anita D. Rapp in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
Restricted access

Abstract

Deep convection that penetrates the tropopause, referred to here as overshooting convection, is capable of lifting tropospheric air well into the stratosphere. In addition to water, these overshoots also transport various chemical species, affecting chemistry and radiation in the stratosphere. It is not currently known, however, how much transport is a result of this mechanism. To better understand overshooting convection, this study aims to characterize the durations of overshooting events. To achieve this, radar data from the Next Generation Weather Radar (NEXRAD) network is composited onto a three-dimensional grid at 5-min intervals. Overshoots are identified by comparing echo-top heights with tropopause estimates derived from ERA5 reanalysis data. These overshoots are linked in space from one analysis time to the next to form tracks. This process is performed for 12 four-day sample windows in the months May–August of 2017–19. Track characteristics such as duration, overshoot area, tropopause-relative altitude, and column-maximum reflectivity are investigated. Positive correlations are found between track duration and other track characteristics. Integrated track volume is found as a product of the overshoot area, depth, and duration, and provides a measure of the potential stratospheric impact of each track. Short-lived tracks are observed to contribute the most total integrated volume when considering track duration, while tracks that overshoot by 2–3 km show the largest contribution when considering overshoot depth. A diurnal cycle is observed, with peak track initiation around 1600–1700 local time. Track-mean duration peaks a few hours earlier, while track-mean area and tropopause-relative height peak a few hours later.

© 2023 American Meteorological Society. For information regarding reuse of this content and general copyright information, consult the AMS Copyright Policy (www.ametsoc.org/PUBSReuseLicenses).

Corresponding author: Daniel Jellis, drjellis@tamu.edu

Abstract

Deep convection that penetrates the tropopause, referred to here as overshooting convection, is capable of lifting tropospheric air well into the stratosphere. In addition to water, these overshoots also transport various chemical species, affecting chemistry and radiation in the stratosphere. It is not currently known, however, how much transport is a result of this mechanism. To better understand overshooting convection, this study aims to characterize the durations of overshooting events. To achieve this, radar data from the Next Generation Weather Radar (NEXRAD) network is composited onto a three-dimensional grid at 5-min intervals. Overshoots are identified by comparing echo-top heights with tropopause estimates derived from ERA5 reanalysis data. These overshoots are linked in space from one analysis time to the next to form tracks. This process is performed for 12 four-day sample windows in the months May–August of 2017–19. Track characteristics such as duration, overshoot area, tropopause-relative altitude, and column-maximum reflectivity are investigated. Positive correlations are found between track duration and other track characteristics. Integrated track volume is found as a product of the overshoot area, depth, and duration, and provides a measure of the potential stratospheric impact of each track. Short-lived tracks are observed to contribute the most total integrated volume when considering track duration, while tracks that overshoot by 2–3 km show the largest contribution when considering overshoot depth. A diurnal cycle is observed, with peak track initiation around 1600–1700 local time. Track-mean duration peaks a few hours earlier, while track-mean area and tropopause-relative height peak a few hours later.

© 2023 American Meteorological Society. For information regarding reuse of this content and general copyright information, consult the AMS Copyright Policy (www.ametsoc.org/PUBSReuseLicenses).

Corresponding author: Daniel Jellis, drjellis@tamu.edu
Save
  • Aschmann, J., B.-M. Sinnhuber, M. P. Chipperfield, and R. Hossaini, 2011: Impact of deep convection and dehydration on bromine loading in the upper troposphere and lower stratosphere. Atmos. Chem. Phys., 11, 26712687, https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-11-2671-2011.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Bedka, K. M., 2011: Overshooting cloud top detections using MSG SEVIRI infrared brightness temperatures and their relationship to severe weather over Europe. Atmos. Res., 99, 175189, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.atmosres.2010.10.001.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Bedka, K. M., E. M. Murillo, C. R. Homeyer, B. Scarino, and H. Mersiovsky, 2018a: The above-anvil cirrus plume: An important severe weather indicator in visible and infrared satellite imagery. Wea. Forecasting, 33, 11591181, https://doi.org/10.1175/WAF-D-18-0040.1.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Bedka, K. M., J. T. Allen, H. J. Punge, M. Kunz, and D. Simanovic, 2018b: A long-term overshooting convective cloud-top detection database over Australia derived from MTSAT Japanese advanced meteorological imager observations. J. Appl. Meteor. Climatol., 57, 937951, https://doi.org/10.1175/JAMC-D-17-0056.1.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Brewer, A. W., 1949: Evidence for a world circulation provided by the measurements of helium and water vapour distribution in the stratosphere. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 75, 351363, https://doi.org/10.1002/qj.49707532603.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Chang, K.-W., K. P. Bowman, and A. D. Rapp, 2023: Transport and confinement of plumes from tropopause-overshooting convection over the contiguous United States during the warm season. J. Geophys. Res. Atmos., 128, e2022JD037020, https://doi.org/10.1029/2022JD037020.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Cooney, J. W., K. P. Bowman, C. R. Homeyer, and T. M. Fenske, 2018: Ten year analysis of tropopause-overshooting convection using GridRad data. J. Geophys. Res. Atmos., 123, 329343, https://doi.org/10.1002/2017JD027718.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Crum, T. D., and R. L. Alberty, 1993: The WSR-88D and the WSR-88D operational support facility. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 74, 16691687, https://doi.org/10.1175/1520-0477(1993)074<1669:TWATWO>2.0.CO;2.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Dobson, G. M. B., 1956: Origin and distribution of the polyatomic molecules in the atmosphere. Proc. Roy. Soc. London, 236A, 187193, https://doi.org/10.1098/rspa.1956.0127.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Flury, T., D. L. Wu, and W. G. Read, 2013: Variability in the speed of the Brewer–Dobson circulation as observed by Aura/MLS. Atmos. Chem. Phys., 13, 45634575, https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-13-4563-2013.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Hersbach, H., and Coauthors, 2020: The ERA5 global reanalysis. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 146, 19992049, https://doi.org/10.1002/qj.3803.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Homeyer, C. R., and K. P. Bowman, 2021: A 22-year evaluation of convection reaching the stratosphere over the United States. J. Geophys. Res. Atmos., 126, e2021JD034808, https://doi.org/10.1029/2021JD034808.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Homeyer, C. R., and K. P. Bowman, 2023: Algorithm description document for version 4.2 of the three-dimensional gridded NEXRAD WSR-88D radar (GridRad) dataset. University of Oklahoma and Texas A&M University Tech. Rep., 30 pp., https://gridrad.org/pdf/GridRad-v4.2-Algorithm-Description.pdf.

  • Jurczyk, A., J. Szturc, and K. Ośródka, 2019: Quality-based compositing of weather radar derived precipitation. Meteor. Appl., 27, e1812, https://doi.org/10.1002/met.1812.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Liu, N., and C. Liu, 2016: Global distribution of deep convection reaching tropopause in 1 year GPM observations. J. Geophys. Res. Atmos., 121, 38243842, https://doi.org/10.1002/2015JD024430.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Mikuš, P., and N. Strelec Mahović, 2013: Satellite-based overshooting top detection methods and an analysis of correlated weather conditions. Atmos. Res., 123, 268280, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.atmosres.2012.09.001.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Minschwaner, K., and J. H. Jiang, 2016: The upward branch of the Brewer-Dobson circulation quantified by tropical stratospheric water vapor and carbon monoxide measurements from the Aura Microwave Limb Sounder. J. Geophys. Res. Atmos., 121, 27902804, https://doi.org/10.1002/2015JD023961.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • O’Neill, M. E., L. Orf, G. M. Heymsfield, and K. Halbert, 2021: Hydraulic jump dynamics above supercell thunderstorms. Science, 373, 12481251, https://doi.org/10.1126/science.abh3857.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Randel, W. J., K. Zhang, and R. Fu, 2015: What controls stratospheric water vapor in the NH summer monsoon regions? J. Geophys. Res. Atmos., 120, 79888001, https://doi.org/10.1002/2015JD023622.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Reichler, T., M. Dameris, and R. Sausen, 2003: Determining the tropopause height from gridded data. Geophys. Res. Lett., 30, 2042, https://doi.org/10.1029/2003GL018240.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Sargent, M. R., J. B. Smith, D. S. Sayres, and J. G. Anderson, 2014: The roles of deep convection and extratropical mixing in the tropical tropopause layer: An in situ measurement perspective. J. Geophys. Res. Atmos., 119, 12 35512 371, https://doi.org/10.1002/2014JD022157.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Solomon, D. L., K. P. Bowman, and C. R. Homeyer, 2016: Tropopause-penetrating convection from three-dimensional gridded NEXRAD data. J. Appl. Meteor. Climatol., 55, 465478, https://doi.org/10.1175/JAMC-D-15-0190.1.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Tang, Q., M. J. Prather, and J. Hsu, 2011: Stratosphere-troposphere exchange ozone flux related to deep convection. Geophys. Res. Lett., 38, L03806, https://doi.org/10.1029/2010GL046039.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Tegtmeier, S., and Coauthors, 2020: Temperature and tropopause characteristics from reanalyses data in the tropical tropopause layer. Atmos. Chem. Phys., 20, 753770, https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-20-753-2020.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Yu, W., A. E. Dessler, M. Park, and E. J. Jensen, 2020: Influence of convection on stratospheric water vapor in the North American monsoon region. Atmos. Chem. Phys., 20, 12 15312 161, https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-20-12153-2020.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Zhang, J., K. Howard, and J. J. Gourley, 2005: Constructing three-dimensional multiple-radar reflectivity mosaics: Examples of convective storms and stratiform rain echoes. J. Atmos. Oceanic Technol., 22, 3042, https://doi.org/10.1175/JTECH-1689.1.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Zhang, J., and Coauthors, 2011: National Mosaic and Multi-sensor QPE (NMQ) system: Description, results, and future plans. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 92, 13211338, https://doi.org/10.1175/2011BAMS-D-11-00047.1.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Zou, L., L. Hoffmann, S. Griessbach, R. Spang, and L. Wang, 2021: Empirical evidence for deep convection being a major source of stratospheric ice clouds over North America. Atmos. Chem. Phys., 21, 10 45710 475, https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-21-10457-2021.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 391 391 26
Full Text Views 201 201 10
PDF Downloads 238 238 15