Date of Completion

8-24-2012

Embargo Period

8-28-2012

Open Access

Open Access

Abstract

This study investigates the use of Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) high-resolution storm analysis in satellite rainfall estimation over complex terrains. Rainfall estimation here is based on the NOAA-Climate Prediction Center morphing (CMORPH) product. Specifically, CMORPH rainfall is adjusted by applying a power-law function whose parameter values are obtained from the comparison between WRF and CMORPH hourly rain rates. Results are presented based on the analyses of five storm cases that induced catastrophic floods in southern Europe. The WRF-based adjusted CMORPH rain rates exhibited improved error statistics against independent radar-rainfall estimates. We show that the adjustment reduces the underestimation of high rain rates thus moderating the strong rainfall magnitude dependence of CMORPH bias. The higher Heidke skill scores for all rain rate thresholds indicate that the adjustment procedure meliorates CMORPH rain rates to provide a better estimation. Results also indicate that the missed rain detection of CMORPH rainfall estimates are also identifiable in the WRF-CMORPH comparison, however, the herein adjustment procedure does not incorporate this effect on CMORPH estimates.

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