Plinius Conference Abstracts
Vol. 17, Plinius17-6, 2022
https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-plinius17-6
17th Plinius Conference on Mediterranean Risks
© Author(s) 2022. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Analysis of a hail bearing Mediterranean supercell through weather radars

Mario Montopoli1, Errico Picciotti2, Luca Baldini3, Saverio Di Fabio4, Frank Marzano5, Marcello M. Miglietta6, Alessandro Tiesi7, Simone Mazzà8, and Gianfranco Vulpiani9
Mario Montopoli et al.
  • 1Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Istituto di Scienze dell’Atmosfera e del Clima (CNR-ISAC), Roma, Italia
  • 2Center of Excellence for Telesensing of Environment and Model Prediction of Severe events (CETEMPS), Università Degli Studi Dell’Aquila, L’Aquila, Italia
  • 3Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Istituto di Scienze dell’Atmosfera e del Clima (CNR-ISAC), Roma, Italia
  • 4Center of Excellence for Telesensing of Environment and Model Prediction of Severe events (CETEMPS), Università Degli Studi Dell’Aquila, L’Aquila, Italia
  • 5Dipartimento di ingegneria dell’informazione, elettronica e telecomunicazioni, Sapienza Università di Roma, Roma, Italia
  • 6Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Istituto di Scienze dell’Atmosfera e del Clima (CNR-ISAC), Padova, Italia
  • 7Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Istituto di Scienze dell’Atmosfera e del Clima (CNR-ISAC), Bologna, Italia
  • 8Università del Salento, Lecce, Italia
  • 9Presidenza del consiglio dei ministri – Dipartimento di protezione civile, Roma, Italia

In recent years, the Mediterranean area has been affected by a continuous and significant increase in the intensity of violent weather events resulting in floods, hailstorms and tornadoes and an increasing impact on human activities, infrastructure and agricultural production.

Among these extreme events, a particularly intense phenomenon occurred on July 10, 2019 affecting much of the central Adriatic coast. In particular, the Pescara area was affected by a supercell that produced heavy rainfall and an exceptional hailstorm, with hailstones even larger than 10 cm in diameter, causing extensive damage.

This contribution documents, for the first time in Italy, the dynamics, morphology and main characteristics of the Pescara supercell [1] which was simultaneously observed, by two C-band meteorological radars of the national Department of Civil Protection (DPC). The results obtained highlight the irreplaceable role of dual-polarization Doppler weather radars in monitoring the evolution of hail, identifying the mesocyclone initiation and the related updraft and downdraft zones as well as their vertical extension, and highlighting the current limitations in determining the size of hail particles from radar measurements. Numerical simulations with the WRF model, using the HAILCAST module to simulate the evolution of hail, were carried out in order to evaluate the capabilities of an operational model in the simulation of such a particular event.

In the context of the intensification of extreme events, this work is also a food for thought on the main aspects to be addressed in the near future to improve the chain of alerting and modelling of extreme events for prevention and civil protection.

[1] M.Montopoli, E.Picciotti, L.Baldini, S.Di Fabio, F.S.Marzano, G.Vulpiani, "Gazing inside a giant-hail-bearing Mediterranean supercell by dual-polarization Doppler weather radar", Atmospheric Research,  Vol. 264, 15 Dec. 2021, 105852, https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0169809521004087?dgcid=author

How to cite: Montopoli, M., Picciotti, E., Baldini, L., Di Fabio, S., Marzano, F., Miglietta, M. M., Tiesi, A., Mazzà, S., and Vulpiani, G.: Analysis of a hail bearing Mediterranean supercell through weather radars, 17th Plinius Conference on Mediterranean Risks, Frascati, Rome, Italy, 12–15 Oct 2021, Plinius17-6, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-plinius17-6, 2021.