Future of Weather Satellites

High Plains Severe

Severe storms produced large hail (including significant) and tornados around Wyoming and Colorado about 29 July 2018. Strong northwest move over a moist airmass resulted in extremely favorable shear and instability over the place, and a SPC Enhanced Risk for serious was in place. Moves-16 1-min imagery was open to support NWS forecasters during the event. Storms early on created overshooting tops and above anvil cirrus plumes, a signature indicative of extreme and significant serious potential. The plumes seem as even cirrus cloud features emanating from the overshooting best and downstream over the storm anvil. Cumulus clouds are also analyzed being drawn in to the southern parts of the storms, indicative of strong inflow winds.

A little later over east-central Colorado, a extreme storm developed that produced a measured wind gust of 83 mph, along with hail at least 2.75cm in size (baseball). GOES-16 1-min imagery of the storm showed a sizable and persistent overshooting leading and an above anvil cirrus plume (VIS, Fig 2). The corresponding 1-min IRW imagery (Fig 3) shows a sizable overshooting top (round place of coldest pixels) plus a relatively cooler spot quickly downstream of the overshooting top (completing the thermal couplet) and a relatively cool place extending downstream above the anvil (above anvil cirrus plume). Overlaying a semi-transparent IRW on the VIS, we acquire the sandwich image combo (Fig 4). Radar imagery of the storm demonstrated reflectivity over 80 dBz along with significant beam attenuation, indicating a lot of hail (Fig 5).

Active Weather Overnight in Southern Colorado

A good cluster of thunderstorms made a long trek southern through the southeast Colorado plains Thursday night into early Friday morning hours. The storms produced major rainfall and gusty winds, incorporating a 45 knot measured gust at La Junta. Also, the storm produced consistent lightning as evidenced by GOES-16 GLM and NLDN CG info. To the west of the storm, low clouds created along the I-25 corridor in the anomalously moist atmosphere. Low ceilings brought IFR circumstances to KCOS and MVFR to KPUB.

Cloud top brightness temperature trends from ABI IR and GLM total lightning trends were analyzed during the night to be able to monitor the fitness of the storm cluster. Offered the 45 knot wind report and regular cold IR temperatures and total lightning, SPS’s were issued throughout the storm. The 4-panel animation shows many long flashes extending in to the anvil stratiform area of the system, that several CGs were measured by NLDN.

As the storm advanced south, low clouds pass on west to the I-25 corridor. The Nighttime Microphyics RGB was utilized to track the progression of the low clouds and amend/revise TAFs. The image blend below displays the nighttime microphysics RGB with IR lighting temperatures overlaid (gray-scale) for the coldest temperature ranges. GLM Flash Extent Density can be overlaid. In the RGB, recall that through the warm season, the ~aqua colorings represent warm liquid water clouds, the ~tan colors are cooler normal water clouds, and the red colors are chilly ice clouds (overlaid with IR in the animation below).

Prolific AACP Producer in Colorado

A long-lived, prolific above anvil cirrus plume (AACP) making storm produced large hail and major rainfall since it tracked southeast along the Sangre de Cristo mountains in south-central Colorado on Tuesday. The most significant hail article from the storm was 1.75m, 12 miles southern of Westcliffe. The storm tracked over two shed scars, resulting in flash flooding. The AACP signature indicates a particularly solid updraft and increased odds of a severe storm.

Iowa Tornados - GOES-16 and JPSS

Severe thunderstorms developed throughout central Iowa during the afternoon of 19 July 2018, making multiple tornados. Fortunately, 1-minute imagery from Moves-16 was obtainable over the spot to aid forecasters through the event.

GOES-16 derived action winds in the area of tornadic production indicated enhanced low-level and deep layer shear just prior to initiation. With area winds of 12 knots from 160 degrees and Runs-16 DMWs indicating ~1 km winds of 16-20 knots from around 220 degrees, 0-1 km shear was around 16 knots, which is normally favorable for supercell tornados (Fig 1). DMWs around 6 km were 40-50 knots from 275 degrees, which yields a 0-6 km shear vector of around 49 knots, favorable for supercell advancement. Body 2 combines the mesoscale and CONUS winds showing the abundance of winds vertically and horizontally that can be obtainable from GOES-16. Figures from the close by DMX VAD wind profiles are similar.

Runs-16 CAPE showed convection develop on the western advantage of a CAPE max. As has been found in previous experiments, although CAPE produced from GOES may sometimes be less than other resources, the gradients in the dampness/instability areas are captured well.

NUCAPS profiles from Suomi-NPP were available prior to the brand of the type of storms around enough time of initiation (Shape 4). Looking at central Iowa doesn’t have a balloon start, temperature and moisture profiles from polar orbiting satellites possess exceptional value. The top circumstances of the profiles ought to be altered to match local obs. After doing so, the profiles near Des Moines indicated around 2,000 j/kg of MLCAPE or more to 4,000 j/kg of SBCAPE, supportive of good updrafts (Figure 5). Even more, the mid/upper levels of the profiles had been dry above moist low amounts, indicating favorable convective instability.

GOES-16 1-min imagery revealed progressively increased cumulus creation and clumping northwest of Des Moines between 1800 UTC and 1900 UTC. Initiation took place shortly thereafter, confirmed by the earliest GLM total lightning detections at 1926 UTC (Shape 6). The first tornado was reported around 1950 UTC, just as GLM FED values began to rapidly rise. A max of 3 flashes/5-min was detected at 1940 UTC, and a max of 23 flashes/5-min was detected at 1950 UTC. At 2000 UTC, a max of 100 flashes/5-min was detected with this storm since it continued to produce a tornado. The updraft weakened briefly thereafter, before strengthening again from 64 flashes/5-min at 2037 UTC to 142 flashes/5-min at 2112 UTC when 1.5 hail was reported.

Further south, extreme thunderstorms produced widespread damaging winds, including a reportedly fatal storm that capsized boats over Table Rock Lake. Runs-16 1-min noticeable imagery showed rapid updraft expansion with this storm through good old anvil clouds up to the tropopause, quickly producing overshooting tops and an above anvil cirrus plume, the latter of which is an indicator of a particularity strong storm.

GLM and DSS, Parallax

GOES-16 GLM info was useful to help monitor storm activity near the site of the El Paso County Good during the week of July 14 - July 21. The fair occurs in Calhan, which is in northeast El Paso County. Through the later afternoon of July 17, a cluster of thunderstorms approached the reasonable grounds from the west. Given the potential for rain, breezy winds, and lightning (verified in GLM with CG’s verified by NLDN), EL Paso County Sheriff’s office was notified at around 2345 UTC. Figure 1 displays a 1-hour prolonged loop updating every 1-minute, while Figure 2 may be the same animation but with the break items discussed in the others of this post.

By 0000 UTC (the center of the loop), 0.5 degree radar reflectivity demonstrated the eastern border of a cell getting into Calhan, with NLDN confirming cloud to ground lightning strikes. Nevertheless, GLM FED indicated lightning activity even now well to the west of city. This discrepancy is because of parallax result inherent in the GLM info. The GLM info in AWIPS is definitely formatted to the two 2 km ABI set grid, so is certainly influenced by the same parallax result. In Colorado from GOES-East, lightning objects can look somewhat to the north and west of where it actually is occurring over the top. Users should get used to the amount of the effect in their CWA, and work with radar, NLDN, etc to confirm where that lightning is really occurring.

By 0029 UTC (the finish of the loop), radar and NLDN info would indicate Calhan in a gap of thunderstorm activity. However, GLM displays mainly prolonged flashes continuing to increase over and around Calhan, implying a continuing lightning threat from the updraft cores and over the fair grounds.

The Full Total Optical Energy Product had not been found to provide any extra value over FED and AFA in this case.