Reconstruction of the Broader Tropical Chimneys using TRMM-Retrieved Wilson Currents

16 March 2017

The baseline 20 km run of the Peterson et al. (2015) electric field retrieval algorithm on the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) dataset is used to rank the three tropical chimney regions. Unlike previous studies that have looked only at land-based thunderstorms, we consider thunderstorms and Electrified Shower Clouds (ESCs) in land and ocean regions across longitude quadrants that encompass each of the three chimneys – the Americas, Africa, and Asia – and the Pacific Ocean.

M. J. Peterson, W. Deierling, C. Liu, D. Mach, and C. Kalb

Geophysical Research Letters, PREPARING SUBMISSION

Picture Caption: 

Diurnal Cycle of Total Mean Current. Distributions of total mean Wilson currents across the tropics (solid, thick), the Americas (solid, thin), Africa, (dot-dashed), Asia (dashed), and the Pacific (dotted).

A TRMM Survey of Retrieved Electric Fields and Wilson Currents above Thunderstorms and Shower Clouds

16 March 2017

A database of Radar Precipitation Features (RPFs) is constructed for electrified clouds. This Electrified Cloud Features (ECF) database includes only those RPFs with pixels that the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) passive microwave electric field algorithm considers to be electrified (20 km electric fields > 0 Vm-1).

M. J. Peterson, W. Deierling, C. Liu, D. Mach, and C. Kalb

Journal of Geophysical Research, FINALIZING SUBMISSION

Picture Caption: 

CDF of GEC Contribution by Current. Distributions for thunderstorms (thick) and shower clouds (thin). Also, separately for land (solid), coastal ocean (dot-dashed), and open ocean (dashed)

A TRMM/GPM Retrieval of the Total Mean Generator Current for the Global Electric Circuit

16 March 2017

Retrieved electric fields from Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) and Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) satellite observations are used to calculate the total mean Wilson current that powers the Global Electric Circuit (GEC). The long record of TRMM data is also used to examine the temporal variability of the GEC source current on time scales that range from one day to more than a decade.

M. J. Peterson, W. Deierling, C. Liu, D. Mach, and C. Kalb

Picture Caption: 

Global GEC Current Sources. Global distribution of total mean Wilson currents from electrified weather as a fraction of the total for comparison with other metrics

Performance Assessment of the Passive Microwave Electric Field Retrieval Algorithm with TRMM Satellite Observations

16 March 2017

Peterson et al. (2015) developed an algorithm for estimating the electric field vector at any point above an electrified cloud from passive microwave observations. It is constructed using NASA ER-2 high-altitude aircraft electric field and passive microwave measurements. The present study constructs a version of the Peterson et al. (2015) algorithm for use with Precipitation Measurement Mission (PMM) satellite datasets.

M. J. Peterson, W. Deierling, C. Liu, D. Mach, and C. Kalb

Journal of Atmospheric and Oceanic Technology, UNDER REVIEW

Picture Caption: 

Example TRMM MCS. TMI 85 GHz brightness temperatures (top), and electric field strength and horizontal vectors (bottom).

A method of estimating electric fields above electrified clouds from passive microwave observations

16 March 2017

An algorithm is presented for estimating the total three-dimensional electric field vector at an arbitrary point over electrified weather from 37 GHz or 85 GHz passive microwave measurements. These frequencies are sensitive to column ice, which is important for electrification. The algorithm uses the geospatial distribution of ice mass as a proxy for charge accumulation across the microwave scene and then employs Coulomb’s Law to approximate the orientation and relative strength of the electric field vector that would be felt by an observer at a specified position and altitude.

M. J. Peterson, W. Deierling, C. Liu, D. Mach, and C. Kalb

Picture Caption: 

Example ER-2 Overflight. Electric fields measured by the field mills (thick line) are compared against the passive microwave estimates (thin line). The percent error is also shown (dotted line)

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