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Archive

Quantitative precipitation forecasting - lessons from MAP


Richard Evelyne

The quality of QPF is a primary goal of operational weather prediction centers but is still a major challenge facing the research community. Precipitation is an end product of a complex chain of physical processes, including upward vertical motion, condensation, formation of precipitation trough microphysical processes, and fallout and downstream advection of precipitation particles. Furthermore these processes extend over an extremely large range of length scales from synoptic-scale lifting to the scale of cloud droplets.

Although moisture-laden airflow toward a mountain is a necessary ingredient, the results from the Mesoscale Alpine Programme (MAP) demonstrate that detailed knowledge of the orographically modified flow is crucial for predicting the intensity, location and duration of orographically influenced precipitation. Some of these results will be reviewed and examined in the perspective of the HYMEX project.