James V. Aanstoos, Department of Geological and Atmospheric Sciences, Iowa State University


This research compared the basic and polarimetric radar products of non-tornadic and pre-tornadic supercells with the intent of finding a signature which appears to be indicative of tornadogenesis or a lack thereof. Reflectivity (ZHH), spectrum width (σv), differential reflectivity (ZDR), correlation coefficient (ρhv), and specific differential phase (KDP) were all visually analyzed using GR2Analyst and compared to existing schematics in an attempt to find a signature. Once an apparent signature was found, pooled t-tests were performed on the data to see if the mean value of the pre-tornadic supercell, where the signature was found, had a statistically significant difference with the mean value of the non-tornadic supercell in the same area. Overall, it was found that the discovered signature was statistically significant on the 95% confidence level. However, due to the small number of cases tested, a relationship between the signature and tornadogenesis cannot be proven, but can be suggested.

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Kristofer S. Tuftedal


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