Session 6.5 Environmental precursors to mesoscale convective system development

Tuesday, 5 October 2004: 2:30 PM
Israel L. Jirak, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO; and W. R. Cotton

Presentation PDF (344.5 kB)

Analyses generated by the Eta Data Assimilation System were examined for several hundred mesoscale convective systems (MCSs) over the U.S. to identify environmental precursors to MCS development. Numerous basic and derived environmental parameters were investigated to determine their importance in MCS development. An index comprised of the most significant parameters, including 700 mb temperature advection and 850 mb meridional wind speed, is introduced. This MCS index indicates areas favorable for MCS development and, as such, can be used as a forecasting tool. The MCS index is further tested for its effectiveness at identifying MCSs that developed during the Bow Echo and MCV Experiment (BAMEX).
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