161 Mobile Doppler Radar Observations of a Cyclic Supercell that Produced a Multi-Vortex Tornado on 22 May 2016 in the Texas Panhandle

Thursday, 10 November 2016
Broadway Rooms (Hilton Portland )
Dylan W. Reif, Univ. of Oklahoma, Norman, OK; and H. B. Bluestein, Z. B. Wienhoff, and K. J. Thiem

On 22 May 2016, RaXPol (a mobile, rapid-scan, X-band, polarimetric Doppler radar) collected a high spatiotemporal resolution dataset of a cyclic tornadic supercell in the Texas Panhandle. RaXPol collected volume scans from 0 to 20 degrees every two degrees with a range gate spacing of 30 m, resulting in an update time of around 25 seconds. WSR-88D data from the Amarillo, TX and Lubbock, TX radars will supplement RaXPol data to describe the entire lifecycle of the storm and its surroundings. The supercell formed in the eastern Texas Panhandle near Lakeview,TX and slowly moved to the north-northwest. While sampled by RaXPol, the supercell underwent at least three episodes of mesocylogenesis and produced multiple tornadoes (the strongest rated an EF-1). One observed tornado exhibited a strongly tilted vortex vertical structure evident by an elongated vortex signature. Another observed tornado initiated near 2345 UTC 20 km from RaXPol. It exhibited a multiple vortex structure, and many of the subvortices were resolved within the Doppler velocity field. Analysis of the cyclic nature of the supercell as well as the multiple episodes of tornadogenesis will be discussed. Documentation of the behavior and evolution of the multiple resolvable vortices will also be described.
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