CSTAR High-Shear Low-CAPE Conference Call Notes – September 2015

The call occurred on Tuesday, September 22nd, from 11AM to around 1145 AM EST. There were participants from NC State, AKQ, CAE, FFC, GSP, HUN, ILM, ILN, MHX, RAH, RNK and SPC.

A recording of the call is available at… https://goo.gl/ULM8jL

1) Keith Sherburn provided a research update on the HSLC process study using idealized modeling and emulated radar sampling project. The slide deck is available for downloading at https://goo.gl/c7RoxI

Differences in low-level instability with events when compared to nulls shown in various forms of CAPE.

Differences in low-level instability with events when compared to nulls shown in various forms of CAPE.

• Keith provided an overview of the dataset encompassed within his ongoing HSLC composites, reflecting a corridor of maximum severe report occurrence from the Lower Mississippi Valley northward into the Ohio Valley.
• The overall nationwide dataset has been subdivided into regional, seasonal, time of day, report type, and event efficiency subsets in an attempt to pinpoint key discriminating features across various situations.
• HSLC events across the western U.S. appear fundamentally dissimilar from the cool season events with which the CSTAR group are familiar.
• Several reoccurring themes have been identified in the composites, including the presence of a coupled jet feature, substantially stronger synoptic scale and mesoscale forcing, and enhanced low-level instability in events when compared to nulls.
• A product of omega and vertical theta-E difference over several layers appears useful for discriminating between events and nulls.
• No one ingredient is a “silver bullet” across all subsets.
• Idealized, homogeneous simulations initialized with composite soundings from the Southeast significant tornado and Southeast unverified warning null datasets reveal substantially different convective evolution. The former simulation exhibits relatively strong convection tied to the leading edge of a cold pool with transient supercell characteristics, while the latter supports outflow-dominated, significantly weaker convection.
• Composite results will be synthesized and hopefully submitted as a manuscript by late next month. Keith’s focus will then return to the hodograph sensitivity work presented previously, while development on a radar emulator for analyzing simulations will begin.

2) Quick update from Lindsay Blank on the operational NWP resolution and sensitivity study using HSLC event hindcasts project.

Lindsay provided a quick update on her project and noted that she has made some progress in using the rotational tracks products to compare model forecasts with radar observations.

3) Collaborator Update

During the call, we welcomed Bill Martin, the new SOO at GSP and noted the recent retirement of Michael Cammarata at CAE and the upcoming retirement of Carin Goodall at MHX next month.

4) CSTAR Workshop

There was a short discussion about a potential CSTAR workshop this fall or winter. Given travel budget concerns and a short planning window, a general consensus noted that exploring a potential workshop in late winter may be the best option.

5) Next conference call

Our next call is scheduled for Tuesday, October 27, 2015 at 11am and will feature a guest presenter. Jason Schaumann from NWS Springfield, MO will be providing a presentation on QLCS Tornado Warnings research that he and other colleagues in Central Region have been working on.

The initial research Operational Application of 0-3 Km Bulk Shear Vectors in Assessing QLCS Mesovortex And Tornado Potential describes a three ingredients method for anticipating mesovortex genesis and rapid intensification. Two related webinars that were given to Central Region and a few Southern Region offices are available for viewing. The first presentation covers the three ingredients method while the second presentation covers radar and warning strategies.

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