Simulation of polarimetric radar variables in rain at S-, C- and X-band wavelengths
- 1Department of Broadband Communications, Graz University of Technology, Graz, Austria
- 2Institute of Applied Systems Technology, Joanneum Research, Graz, Austria
Abstract. Polarimetric radar variables of rainfall events, like differential reflectivity ZDR, or specific differential phase KDP, are better suited for estimating rain rate R than just the reflectivity factor for horizontally polarized waves, ZH. A variety of physical and empirical approaches exist to estimate the rain rate from polarimetric radar observables. The relationships vary over a wide range with the location and the weather conditions. In this study, the polarimetric radar variables were simulated for S-, C- and X-band wavelengths in order to establish radar rainfall estimators for the alpine region of the form R(KDP), R(ZH, ZDR), and R(KDP), ZDR. For the simulation drop size distributions of hundreds of 1-minute-rain episodes were obtained from 2D-Video-Distrometer measurements in the mountains of Styria, Austria. The sensitivity of the polarimetric variables to temperature is investigated, as well as the influence of different rain drop shape models – including recently published ones – on radar rainfall estimators. Finally it is shown how the polarimetric radar variables change with the elevation angle of the radar antenna.