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  • Author or Editor: Giorgio M. Caranti x
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Carlos M. Scavuzzo
Giorgio M. Caranti


The dependence on liquid water content (LWC) and temperature (T) of the charge transfer, and in particular its sign, during ice crystal–graupel collisions is a matter of controversy. Some of the laboratory measurements do not agree on the general shape of this function, although they agree on the existence of a critical temperature T r , above which there is one sign and below which the opposite one. In this paper, the authors carry out a numerical study to investigate the behavior of three charging parameterizations in thunderstorm electrification. This study is carried out on one cloud case study, and a limited set of T–LWC values are present. Surprisingly, the general behavior is the same among the three, despite the distinct differences in the charging diagrams.

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Eldo E. Avila
Guillermo G. Aguirre Varela
, and
Giorgio M. Caranti


Charge transfer between colliding ice particles is measured using a wind tunnel inside a cold room. A cylinder growing by riming in a wind tunnel was used as a target for collisions between 5 and 6 m s−1 with ice spheres of 100-µm diameter. The target temperature was adjusted to simulate different liquid water concentrations. As the target temperature increased, for air temperatures below −18°C, initial positive target charging reversed sign to negative; with a further temperature increase the charging reversed sign again. These measurements, which are relevant to thunderstorm electrification, were carried out with and without riming and results are compared with other works. A novel approach is presented here suggesting a new pair of variables describing the charging.

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