16A.3
The Anatomy and Physics of ZDR Columns

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Thursday, 6 November 2014: 4:45 PM
Madison Ballroom (Madison Concourse Hotel)
Matthew R. Kumjian, Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA; and A. P. Khain, N. BenMoshe, E. Ilotovich, and A. V. Ryzhkov

Polarimetric radar observations of deep convective storms frequently reveal columnar enhancements of differential reflectivity (ZDR). Such “ZDR columns” can extend more than 3 km above the environmental 0 °C level and indicate supercooled liquid drops being lofted by the updraft. In this study, we use a sophisticated spectral bin microphysics model (the Hebrew University Cloud Model) to simulate a deep convective storm and its ZDR columns. In doing so, we clarify the mechanism of initial ZDR column formation, quantify its internal hydrometeor structure, and document its complete life cycle. In addition, we explore practical applications of ZDR columns, demonstrating the relationship between ZDR column height and updraft speed, and how increases in ZDR column height are correlated to increased precipitation and hail at the surface after 10-15 minutes.