J3J.5 The stratiform region of an MCS on 19 June in TELEX 2004 observed with polarimetric and multi-Dopper radars, electric field soundings, and a lightning mapping array

Tuesday, 25 October 2005: 9:30 AM
Alvarado ABCD (Hotel Albuquerque at Old Town)
D. Rust, NOAA/NSSL, Norman, OK; and D. MacGorman, T. J. Schuur, E. Bruning, P. Krehbiel, B. Rison, T. Hamlin, J. M. Straka, C. D. Payne, N. R. Ramig, I. Apostolakopoulos, M. Biggerstaff, L. D. Carey, and A. Caine

Polarimetric and Doppler radar data, balloon-borne soundings of the electric field, and three-dimensional lightning mapping array data from a mesoscale convective system (MCS) on 19 June 2004 during the Thunderstorm Electrification and Lightning Experiment (TELEX) are analyzed. A total of 12 partial and complete vertical soundings through the storm were obtained from the flights of five instrumented balloons: two launched in the convective region, one in the transition zone, and two in the stratiform region. At times, multiple soundings were in progress. This presentation is focused on the stratiform region of the MCS, which was sampled by balloons four and five. A comparison with previously published conceptual models of the electrical structure of the stratiform region of MCSs suggests that this was, at least during part of its lifetime, a Type A, which is the more complex type relative to charge structure. A one-dimensional analysis with Gauss's law indicates six vertically stacked charge layers that alternated polarity within the stratiform region. The maximum magnitude of the electric field was about 105 kV m-1. A comparison of the charge distribution inferred from the electric field vectors shows that all six layers inferred with 1-D Gauss are found in the vector data. The descent sounding, which began one hour after the ascent launch, is very different: it shows a very simple electric field structure that fits neither previously defined type, perhaps because the sounding was far from the front of the MCS. There were only two charge density layers in the cloud. The maximum electric field was about 45 kV m-1. The final soundings (fifth balloon) had a maximum electric field of about 10 kV m-1 on both ascent and descent. The storm charge layers inferred from Oklahoma Lightning Mapping Array are also consistent with the other data. Reconstructed range height indicators from multiple radars allow us to compare radar echo top to cloud top determined from the electric field soundings. In addition, charge structure and lightning structure are examined relative to the distribution of various types of hydrometeors and kinematic features inferred from the polarimetric and multi-Doppler radar analyses.
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