Notes from the 2 February HSLC call

In attendance…

Matt Parker, Keith Sherburn, Jason Davis (NCSU), Pat Moore, Justin Lane (GSP), Steve Keighton (RNK), Steve Zubrick (LWX), Andrew Zimmerman (AKQ), Mike Strickler, Jonathan Blaes (RAH), Tony Petrolito (CAE), Frank Alsheimer (CHS), Trisha Palmer, Steve Nelson (FFC), Andy Kula (HSV)

I.                   Status of GSP Case Study

 The case study is not complete but significant progress has been made.  Justin has completed the radar analysis portion and the synoptic analysis was largely done already by Pat.  The mesoscale analysis will be next.  Justin still wants to analyze any Tornado Warning false alarms. 

 The “template” case study will consist of the following:

1. Full synoptic analysis.
2. Hourly mesoanalysis
3. Estimates of shear/instability parameters in the vicinity of each severe report.
4. Detailed radar analysis of tornado events and “high impact” downburst events
   a. Subjective reflectivity analysis, subjective/partly objective base velocity analysis, and mostly objective storm relative velocity analysis of every 4th volume scan for 15-60 minutes prior to the event .
   b. Subjective reflectivity analysis, subjective/partly objective base velocity analysis, and mostly objective storm relative velocity analysis of every volume scan 15 minutes prior to the event.
5. Detailed radar analysis of TOR false alarms- Subjective reflectivity analysis, subjective/partly objective base velocity analysis, and mostly objective storm relative velocity analysis of every volume scan from the time the warning was issued until 15 minutes after issuance.  (The 15 minute threshold was not randomly selected, but based upon NWS lead time goals).

 After the rough draft is complete and reviewed by the CIs, it will be distributed to the Science Officers for further review and comment.

 Although the GSP study is not complete, there is no need for other offices to wait to begin a synoptic and/or mesoscale analysis for their first high priority case.  After the call, Justin sent out an e-mail regarding the case study responsibility that has been “assigned” to each office.  A document can be found at…

Some discussion ensued about a deadline for completion of the case study.  All agreed that a reasonable goal for completion of at least one case study was the next CSTAR workshop, tentatively scheduled for mid-November 2012.

 The question was raised if it would be better to take convective parameters from a RUC proximity sounding or from the SPC mesoanalysis data.  The prevailing thought was that RUC soundings might provide a better approximation of the environment and would be an easier way to obtain CAPE and shear information rather than estimating it from SPC graphics.  The initial thought was to use the archive at Iowa State to obtain RUC grids for use in looking at soundings in Bufkit.  However, it appears the ISU archive only contains data for select locations over the Midwest.  So, at the current time we are looking for another source and means for obtaining this data.

 Another question was raised about how radar data should be interrogated and displayed in the case study.  It was suggested that GR2Analyst would prove to be the better choice because most WFOs do not have enough data archived from radars other than their own.  Using GR2Analyst would be a way of maintaining consistency from one radar to the next.  The main problem is the lack of archived base data from the TDWRs.

 There was also talk about evaluating the NROT product in GR2Analyst .

 II.                Update from NCSU


A.    Summary of Jason and Keith’s trip to GSP

 Keith has since posted a summary of their visit to WFO GSP on the CIMMSE blog.  Please visit the blog for more information.

 B.     Google Earth files for high priority cases

 The SPC mesoanalysis grids for the high priority cases are now available in both png and kml formats on a web server at NCSU.  The server is located at…

 Matt has since sent an e-mail to the group with instructions on how to obtain the files and information on what is contained in the distribution.


C.     Update on SPC relational database and convective modes database

We have all of the data now; as of the call, investigation had only
been underway for about a week

-We have roughly 80 parameters from the nearest grid point to all
tornado, severe hail, and severe wind reports for the cases in our
group’s database

-We also have a convective modes database with subjectively determined
radar structures (cellular or linear, QLCS or supercell, etc.) for all
tornadoes and significant severe reports

-We do not yet have data for the nulls, but we will request those as
soon as the null cases list is complete

D.    The discussion of this item was tabled until the next call.

 III.             There was no item three in the agenda

 IV.             Status of FFC null database

 Trisha had to leave the call before we could get this far, but she sent an e-mail with the status update, which I will share right now…

 Of the 5-year (2006-2010) “cool” season (October-May) database, the students have completed the database for

  • All of the risk areas
  • All of the severe reports

Partially complete data:

  • All but about 12 months of actual convection reports.  Incomplete months are:
    • December 2008
    • All of 2009
    • January-April 2010
  • All but about 11 months of CAPE/shear analysis.  Incomplete months are:
    • All of 2009
    • January-April 2010

We have a significant database as it is, with MANY null cases to look at, even excluding the months listed above.  I’d like to have 2009 complete, of course.  I can continue having them work on it or we can just go with what we have.

 V.                Next conference call

I would like to get back to the regular 4th Thursday schedule, which means the next call should be on 23 February, at 10 am.


About nws-pat moore

B.S. Meteorology, State Univ. of New York - College at Oneonta (1987) M.S. Meteorology, The Florida State University (1996) National Weather Service (12/3/90 to present), stationed at GSP since 8/16/98.
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