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Radar rainfall estimation for the post-event analysis of a Slovenian flash-flood case: application of the Mountain Reference Technique at C-band frequency

Abstract : This article is dedicated to radar rainfall estimation for the post-event analysis of a Slovenian flash flood that occurred on 18 September 2007. The utility of the Mountain Reference Technique is demonstrated to quantify rain attenuation effects that affect C-band radar measurements in heavy rain. Maximum path-integrated attenuation between 15 and 20 dB were measured thanks to mountain returns for path-averaged rain rates between 10 and 15 mm h−1 over a 120-km path. The proposed technique allowed estimation of an effective radar calibration correction factor, assuming the reflectivity-attenuation relationship to be known. Screening effects were quantified using a geometrical calculation based on a digitized terrain model of the region. The vertical structure of the reflectivity was modelled with a normalized apparent vertical profile of reflectivity. Implementation of the radar data processing indicated that: (1) attenuation correction using the Hitschfeld Bordan algorithm allowed obtaining satisfactory radar rain estimates (Nash criterion of 0.8 at the event time scale); (2) due to the attenuation equation instability, it is however compulsory to limit the maximum path-integrated attenuation to be corrected to about 10 dB; (3) the results also proved to be sensitive on the parameterization of reflectivity-attenuation-rainrate relationships. The convective nature of the precipitation explains the rather good performance obtained. For more contrasted rainy systems with convective and stratiform regions, the combination of the vertical (VPR) and radial (attenuation, screening) sources of heterogeneity yields a still very challenging problem for radar quantitative precipitation estimation at C-band.
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https://hal-insu.archives-ouvertes.fr/insu-00411924
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Submitted on : Monday, February 27, 2012 - 9:14:10 AM
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Ludovic Bouilloud, Guy Delrieu, Brice Boudevillain, M. Borga, F. Zanon. Radar rainfall estimation for the post-event analysis of a Slovenian flash-flood case: application of the Mountain Reference Technique at C-band frequency. Hydrology and Earth System Sciences, European Geosciences Union, 2009, 13 (7), pp.1349-1360. ⟨10.5194/hess-13-1349-2009⟩. ⟨insu-00411924⟩

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