P4.12
Examining radar 'side-lobe spikes' for severe hail identification

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Tuesday, 12 October 2010
Examining radar 'side-lobe spikes' for severe hail identification
Grand Mesa Ballroom ABC (Hyatt Regency Tech Center)
Kevin L. Manross, CIMMS/Univ. of Oklahoma and NOAA/NSSL, Norman, OK; and K. L. Ortega and A. E. Pietrycha

Poster PDF (1017.7 kB)

The Three Body Scatter Spike (TBSS) has long been considered a significant indicator of the presence of large hail in thunderstorms. This is a multi-path phenomenon that results in a "spike" of higher reflectivity down radial from an area of high reflectivity observed on radar. Another radar spike has been long observed that emanates azimuthally from a high reflectivity core due to radar beam side-lobe contamination in situations where there is a large reflectivity gradient. For events where severe weather is likely, the question is asked whether the presence of these "side-lobe spikes" can be an indicator of the presence of severe hail, much like the TBSS. High resolution hail verification from the SHAVE project is used to answer whether this side-lobe spike can deterministically indicate the presence of severe hail or even quantify what the minimum size of hail may be present in such cores. The question is then asked if this could lead to increased confidence in warning operations.

Supplementary URL: http://www.cimms.ou.edu/~kmanross/Sidelobespike