727 A comparison and assessment of the USPLN and ENTLN

Wednesday, 9 January 2013
Exhibit Hall 3 (Austin Convention Center)
Stephen Strader, Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL; and W. S. Ashley

Handout (905.5 kB)

Previous research has argued that lightning data may have applicability in the forecasting and nowcasting of severe weather hazards. Most of research that has examined the lightning and severe weather hazard relationship employs the National Lightning Detection Network (NLDN) as their primary data source. However, the installation and maturation of two additional remote sensing lightning networks — the United States Precision Lightning Network (USPLN) and the Earth Networks Total Lightning Network (ENTLN) — have promoted alternative sources of data for climatological and hazard relationship assessments. In this investigation, contiguous U.S. lightning climatologies constructed from the USPLN and ENTLN are examined and compared for the entirety of 2011, promoting an independent, systematic assessment of each system's lightning flash detection and magnitude efficiency. We emphasize distinctive lightning-intensive events as points of comparison. This study facilitates an improved understanding of the USPLN and ENTLN strengths and weaknesses, commencing dialogue regarding network choice and research application. With the use of USPLN and ENTLN data in conjunction with NLDN data, we conjecture that future studies examining the lightning-severe weather hazard relationship will be more comprehensive and explanatory.
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