Search Results

You are looking at 1 - 10 of 12 items for

  • Author or Editor: Frank S. Marzano x
  • Refine by Access: All Content x
Clear All Modify Search
Gianfranco Vulpiani, Scott Giangrande, and Frank S. Marzano

Abstract

A procedure for the estimation of rainfall rate, capitalizing on a radar-based raindrop size distribution (RSD) parameter retrieval and neural network (NN) inversion techniques, is validated using an extensive and quality-controlled archive. The RSD retrieval algorithm utilizes polarimetric variables measured by the polarimetric prototype of the Weather Surveillance Radar-1988 Doppler (WSR-88D) in Norman, Oklahoma (KOUN), through an ad hoc regularized neural network method. Evaluation of rainfall estimation from the NN-based method is accomplished using a large radar data and surface gauge observation dataset collected in central Oklahoma during the multiyear Joint Polarization Experiment (JPOLE) field campaign. Point estimates of hourly rainfall accumulations and instantaneous rainfall rates from NN-based and parametric polarimetric rainfall relations are compared with dense surface gauge observations. Rainfall accumulations from RSD retrieval-based methods are shown to be sensitive to the choice of a raindrop fall speed model. To minimize the impact of this choice, a new “direct” neural network approach is tested. Proposed NN-based approaches exhibit bias and root-mean-square error characteristics comparable with those obtained from parametric relations, specifically optimized for the JPOLE dataset, indicating an appealing generalization capability with respect to the climatological context. All tested polarimetric relations are shown to be sensitive to hail contamination as inferred from the results of automatic polarimetric echo classification and available storm reports.

Full access
Laura Bianco, Domenico Cimini, Frank S. Marzano, and Randolph Ware

Abstract

A self-consistent remote sensing physical method to retrieve atmospheric humidity high-resolution profiles by synergetic use of a microwave radiometer profiler (MWRP) and wind profiler radar (WPR) is illustrated. The proposed technique is based on the processing of WPR data for estimating the potential refractivity gradient profiles and their optimal combination with MWRP estimates of potential temperature profiles in order to fully retrieve humidity gradient profiles. The combined algorithm makes use of recent developments in WPR signal processing, computing the zeroth-, first-, and second-order moments of WPR Doppler spectra via a fuzzy logic method, which provides quality control of radar data in the spectral domain. On the other hand, the application of neural network to brightness temperatures, measured by a multichannel MWRP, can provide continuous estimates of tropospheric temperature and humidity profiles. Performance of the combined algorithm in retrieving humidity profiles is compared with simultaneous in situ radiosonde observations (raob’s). The empirical sets of WPR and MWRP data were collected at the Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Program’s Southern Great Plains (SGP) site. Combined microwave radiometer and wind profiler measurements show encouraging results and significantly improve the spatial vertical resolution of atmospheric humidity profiles. Finally, some of the limitations found in the use of this technique and possible future improvements are also discussed.

Full access
Frank S. Marzano, Errico Picciotti, Mario Montopoli, and Gianfranco Vulpiani

Microphysical and dynamical features of volcanic tephra due to Plinian and sub-Plinian eruptions can be quantitatively monitored by using ground-based microwave weather radars. The methodological rationale and unique potential of this remote-sensing technique are illustrated and discussed. Volume data, acquired by ground-based weather radars, are processed to automatically classify and estimate ash particle concentration and fallout. The physical– statistical retrieval algorithm is based on a backscattering microphysical model of fine, coarse, and lapilli ash particles, used within a Bayesian classification and optimal estimation methodology. The experimental evidence of the usefulness and limitations of radar acquisitions for volcanic ash monitoring is supported by describing several case studies of volcanic eruptions all over the world. The radar sensitivity due to the distance and the system noise, as well as the various radar bands and configurations (i.e., Doppler and dual polarized), are taken into account. The discussed examples of radar-derived ash concentrations refer to the case studies of the Augustine volcano eruption in 2002, observed in Alaska by an S-band radar; the Grímsvötn volcano eruptions in 2004 and 2011, observed in Iceland by C- and X-band weather radars and compared with in situ samples; and the Mount Etna volcano eruption in 2011, observed by an X-band polarimetric radar. These applications demonstrate the variety of radar-based products that can be derived and exploited for the study of explosive volcanism.

Full access
Francisco J. Tapiador, Chris Kidd, Vincenzo Levizzani, and Frank S. Marzano

Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to evaluate a new operational procedure to produce half-hourly rainfall estimates at 0.1° spatial resolution. Rainfall is estimated using a neural networks (NN)–based approach utilizing passive microwave (PMW) and infrared satellite measurements. Several neural networks are tested, from multilayer perceptron to adaptative resonance theory architectures. The NN analytical selection process is explained. Half- hourly rain gauge data over Andalusia, Spain, are used for validation purposes. Several interpolation procedures are tested to transform point to areal measurements, including the maximum entropy estimation method. Rainfall estimations are also compared with Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite precipitation index and histogram-matching results. Half-hourly rainfall estimates give ∼0.6 correlations with PMW data (∼0.2 with gauge), and average correlations of up to 0.7 and 0.6 are obtained for 0.5° and 0.1° monthly accumulated estimates, respectively.

Full access
Gianfranco Vulpiani, Pierre Tabary, Jacques Parent du Chatelet, and Frank S. Marzano

Abstract

Rain path attenuation correction is a challenging task for quantitative use of weather radar measurements at frequencies higher than S band. The proportionality relationship between specific attenuation αhh (specific differential attenuation α dp) and specific differential phase K dp is the basis for simple path-integrated attenuation correction using differential phase Φdp. However, the coefficients of proportionality are known to be dependent upon temperature, on the one hand, and shape and raindrop size distribution, on the other hand. To solve this problem, a Bayesian classification scheme is proposed to empirically find the prevailing rain regime and adapt the Φdp-based method. The proposed approach herein is compared with other polarimetric techniques currently available in the literature. Several episodes observed in the Paris, France, area by the C-band dual-polarized weather radar operating in Trappes (France) are analyzed and results are discussed.

Full access
Marios N. Anagnostou, John Kalogiros, Frank S. Marzano, Emmanouil N. Anagnostou, Mario Montopoli, and Errico Piccioti

Abstract

Accurate estimation of precipitation at high spatial and temporal resolution of weather radars is an open problem in hydrometeorological applications. The use of dual polarization gives the advantage of multiparameter measurements using orthogonal polarization states. These measurements carry significant information, useful for estimating rain-path signal attenuation, drop size distribution (DSD), and rainfall rate. This study evaluates a new self-consistent with optimal parameterization attenuation correction and rain microphysics estimation algorithm (named SCOP-ME). Long-term X-band dual-polarization measurements and disdrometer DSD parameter data, acquired in Athens, Greece, have been used to quantitatively and qualitatively compare SCOP-ME retrievals of median volume diameter D 0 and intercept parameter NW with two existing rain microphysical estimation algorithms and the SCOP-ME retrievals of rain rate with three available radar rainfall estimation algorithms. Error statistics for rain rate estimation, in terms of relative mean and root-mean-square error and efficiency, show that the SCOP-ME has low relative error if compared to the other three methods, which systematically underestimate rainfall. The SCOP-ME rain microphysics algorithm also shows a lower relative error statistic when compared to the other two microphysical algorithms. However, measurement noise or other signal degradation effects can significantly affect the estimation of the DSD intercept parameter from the three different algorithms used in this study. Rainfall rate estimates with SCOP-ME mostly depend on the median volume diameter, which is estimated much more efficiently than the intercept parameter. Comparisons based on the long-term dataset are relatively insensitive to path-integrated attenuation variability and rainfall rates, providing relatively accurate retrievals of the DSD parameters when compared to the other two algorithms.

Full access
Frank S. Marzano, Domenico Cimini, Tommaso Rossi, Daniele Mortari, Sabatino Di Michele, and Peter Bauer

Abstract

The potential of an elliptical-orbit Flower Constellation of Millimeter-Wave Radiometers (FLORAD) for humidity profile and precipitating cloud observations is analyzed and discussed. The FLORAD mission scientific requirements are aimed at the retrieval of hydrological properties of the troposphere, specifically water vapor, cloud liquid content, rainfall, and snowfall profiles. This analysis is built on the results already obtained in previous works and is specifically devoted to evaluate the possibility of (i) deploying an incremental configuration of a Flower constellation of six minisatellites, optimized to provide the maximum revisit time over the Mediterranean area or, more generally, midlatitudes (between ±35° and ±65°); and (ii) evaluating in a quantitative way the accuracy of a one-dimensional variational data assimilation (1D-Var) Bayesian retrieval scheme to derive hydrometeor profiles at quasi-global scale using an optimized set of millimeter-wave frequencies. The obtained results show that a revisit time over the Mediterranean area (latitude 25° 45′, longitude −10° 35′°) of less than about 1 and 0.5 h can be obtained with four satellites and six satellites in Flower elliptical orbits, respectively. The accuracy of the retrieved hydrometeor profiles over land and sea for a winter and summer season at several latitudes shows the beneficial performance from using a combination of channels at 89, 118, 183, and 229 GHz. A lack of lower frequencies, such as those below 50 GHz, reduces the sounding capability for cloud lower layers, but the temperature and humidity retrievals provide a useful hydrometeor profile constraint. The FLORAD mission is fully consistent with the Global Precipitation Mission (GPM) scope and may significantly increase its space–time coverage. The concept of an incremental Flower constellation can ensure the flexibility to deploy a spaceborne system that achieves increasing coverage through separate launches of member spacecrafts. The choice of millimeter-wave frequencies provides the advantage of designing compact radiometers that comply well with the current technology of minisatellites (overall weight less than 500 kg). The overall budget of the FLORAD small mission might become appealing as an optimal compromise between retrieval performances and system complexity.

Full access
John Kalogiros, Marios N. Anagnostou, Emmanouil N. Anagnostou, Mario Montopoli, Errico Picciotti, and Frank S. Marzano

Abstract

A method for correcting the vertical profile of reflectivity measurements and rainfall estimates (VPR) in plan position indicator (PPI) scans of polarimetric weather radars in the melting layer and the snow layer during stratiform rain is presented. The method for the detection of the boundaries of the melting layer is based on the well-established characteristic of local minimum of copolar correlation coefficient in the melting layer. This method is applied to PPI scans instead of a beam-by-beam basis with the addition of new acceptance criteria adapted to the radar used in this study. An apparent vertical profile of reflectivity measurements, or rainfall estimate, is calculated by averaging the range profiles from all of the available azimuth directions in each PPI scan. The height of each profile is properly scaled with melting-layer boundaries, and the reflectivity, or rainfall estimate, is normalized with respect to its value at the lower boundary of the melting layer. This approach allows variations of the melting-layer boundaries in space and time and variations of the shape of the apparent VPR in time. The application of the VPR correction to reflectivity and rainfall estimates from a reflectivity–rainfall algorithm and a polarimetric algorithm showed that this VPR correction method effectively removes the bias that is due to the brightband effect in PPI scans. It performs also satisfactorily in the snow region, removing the decrease of the observed VPR with range but with an overestimation by 2 dB or more. This method does not require a tuning using climatological data, and it can be applied on any algorithm for rainfall estimation.

Full access
Gianfranco Vulpiani, Mario Montopoli, Luca Delli Passeri, Antonio G. Gioia, Pietro Giordano, and Frank S. Marzano

Abstract

Radar-rainfall estimation is a complex process that involves several error sources, some of which are related to the environmental context. The presence of orographic obstacles heavily affects the quality of the retrieved radar products. In relatively flat terrain conditions, dual-polarization capability has been proven either to increase the data quality or to improve the rainfall estimate. The potential benefit of using polarimetric techniques for precipitation retrieval is evaluated here using data coming from two radar systems operating in Italy under complex-orography conditions. The analysis outlines encouraging results that might open new scenarios for operational applications. Indeed, the applied rainfall algorithm employing specific differential phase mostly outperformed the examined reflectivity-based retrieval techniques except for the analyzed winter storm. In the latter case, the likely contamination by frozen or melting snow tended to degrade the performance of the examined K dp-based rainfall algorithms.

Full access
Giulia Panegrossi, Stefano Dietrich, Frank S. Marzano, Alberto Mugnai, Eric A. Smith, Xuwu Xiang, Gregory J. Tripoli, Pao K. Wang, and J. P. V. Poiares Baptista

Abstract

Precipitation estimation from passive microwave radiometry based on physically based profile retrieval algorithms must be aided by a microphysical generator providing structure information on the lower portions of the cloud, consistent with the upper-cloud structures that are sensed. One of the sources for this information is mesoscale model simulations involving explicit or parameterized microphysics. Such microphysical information can be then associated to brightness temperature signatures by using radiative transfer models, forming what are referred to as cloud–radiation databases. In this study cloud–radiation databases from three different storm simulations involving two different mesoscale models run at cloud scales are developed and analyzed. Each database relates a set of microphysical profile realizations describing the space–time properties of a given precipitating storm to multifrequency brightness temperatures associated to a measuring radiometer. In calculating the multifrequency signatures associated with the individual microphysical profiles over model space–time, the authors form what are called brightness temperature model manifolds. Their dimensionality is determined by the number of frequencies carried by the measuring radiometer. By then forming an analogous measurement manifold based on the actual radiometer observations, the radiative consistency between the model representation of a rain cloud and the measured representation are compared. In the analysis, the authors explore how various microphysical, macrophysical, and environmental factors affect the nature of the model manifolds, and how these factors produce or mitigate mismatch between the measurement and model manifolds. Various methods are examined that can be used to eliminate such mismatch. The various cloud–radiation databases are also used with a simplified profile retrieval algorithm to examine the sensitivity of the retrieved hydrometeor profiles and surface rainrates to the different microphysical, macrophysical, and environmental factors of the simulated storms. The results emphasize the need for physical retrieval algorithms to account for a number of these factors, thus preventing biased interpretation of the rain properties of precipitating storms, and minimizing rms uncertainties in the retrieved quantities.

Full access