A mobile, phased array Doppler radar for the study of severe convective storms
Bluestein, Howard B.
French, Michael N.
Bluth, Robert T.
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(1999) found after inspecting Weather Surveillance Radar-1988 Doppler (WSR-88D) volume scans that some tornadic vortex signatures descend, whereas others appear in a column simultaneously. Since it takes -4-5 min to complete a volume scan (Crum and Alberty 1993), the latter finding might not hold for shorter time scales: A midlevel (~5 km AGL) vortex advected downward by a downdraft of -20 m s-1 for 4 min will descend ~5 km (i.e., down to the ground); with observations on a 4-5-min time scale, the descent would appear to be simultaneous.
The article of record as published may be found at http://dx.doi.org/10.1175/2009BAMS2914.1