Radar Storm Echo Analysis

Mar 11, 2016
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Hi, I'm fairly new to analysing storms and radar echoes. I have attached an example of an echo from storms in the UK to this post. The picture is from a weather forum called www.netweather.tv. People commented on the echo saying it had severe storm features.

I'm interested to learn, so does anyone here agree with those comments? Does this appear to show anything (potentially) severe and what could indicate that? I do think it has a distinctive shape rather than being like a random blob.
 

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rdale

EF5
Mar 1, 2004
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Lansing, MI
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Maybe. But without a color table, upper level information, knowledge of the height of the radar beam in the storm, etc. it's absolutely impossible to determine.
 
Feb 21, 2012
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Wichita, KS
A storms "shape" on radar is rarely indicative of whether the storm is severe on not. I'd encourage you to look up the severe weather threshold (I'm not sure what they are in the UK) and what basic radar products indicate how close you are to these.

If you're referring to the storms looking like a supercell, again this is pretty subjective but they do somewhat resemble the "classic supercell" with a hook echo. Again this alone means nothing and a majority of storms that look like that fail to produce severe weather or tornadoes. If you're looking to learn more about analyzing radar, it's more important to know what you're actually looking at (reflectivity in dbz, velocity, etc) rather than focusing on things like shapes and colors. Hope that helps.

Sent from my SM-G930T using Tapatalk
 
Mar 11, 2016
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Thanks for the answers, unfortunately the radar on netweather is pretty basic and those colors only relate to mm/hr precipitation rates and not dbz.

Also these storms were over fairly remote areas, but according to a power-point presentation on UK storms I found two days ago, the southern one produced sizable hailstones near a town which would be almost directly under it when I worked out its position with google earth.

I know we have doppler radar in the UK (quite a few actually) but it isn't made publicly available and any data comes at a big price from the Met Office.
 
Mar 11, 2016
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Nice one, thanks for the link. I thought the radar pic in my opening post could be the same storm as the one I mentioned in the "Questions about a severe storm thread" but wasn't totally sure.. seems the storm moved very quickly. The document I found about the storm (in my other thread) mentioned it being elevated though, wonder if that means it cannot potentially spawn tornadoes?
 
Mar 11, 2016
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I managed to find a photo of the storm in the radar echo picture above, which shows the low-level features un-obscured by terrain, and was taken at 1:30AM as it approached the North Sea.
 

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Richard - if this was on July 1st 2015 then the storm has been confirmed as a supercell - indeed, several occurred on this evening.

There is no reason for the UK Met Office not to make Doppler and Dual Pol radar publicly available - they are our weather service, and so it should be available - but the model of public weather in the UK, and Europe, is very different compared with the US. For instance, the Met Office competes commercially for contracts against private firms - the NWS cannot do this.

Back to this image - it can be possible to spot things like hook echoes on the UK radar - but all which we have available is composite imagery - not base imagery - and so it has to be very obvious and pronounced before one can be certain.

By the way, that pic is very cool - where did you find it?
 
Mar 11, 2016
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By the way, that pic is very cool - where did you find it?
I was looking on flickr and typing in "thunderstorm july 2015 england" or some similar search criteria. So it comes up on there if you type that in. The photographer (speartip photography) also has a facebook page with the picture on it. It includes the comment that this was the last storm of the day going out to sea early on 2nd July (so the most southern one in the radar echo picture then).
 
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Mar 11, 2016
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I also found a picture of the same cell at its very inception, over Greater Manchester (time was about 10:50PM). It is the tall nuclear-explosion looking CB in the middle. The flanking line build up behind it (infront in the picture) merged into the main updraft as it became a supercell, rather than becoming new cells.

Link to this and more pictures: https://www.manchestereveningnews.c...ster-lightning-storm-thunder-pictures-9569812
 

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