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Multicell Storm Analysis
using the lemon technique
As the multicell storm becomes severe,
the stronger updraft becomes more
vertical and the top shifts upwind over a tightening low-level reflectivity
gradient on the updraft storm flank. This transformation is not the same
updraft becoming more erect with time, but a new flanking line tower that is
more powerful than earlier updrafts.
[Image: lemon technique analysis of thunderstorm (60K)]
The precipitation downwind of the updraft
becomes heavier, with moderately
(marble to golf ball size) falling near the updraft. Size
separation of precipitation accounts for the increased
VIP level gradient, with
the lightest elements being blown the greatest downwind distance.
Tightening VIP gradient,
shift in Cb
top position, and development of mid-level
echo overhang above a low-level weak echo region (WER) are all strong
indicators of an intensifying updraft and increasing severe potential. As this
intensification process proceeds, the strongest
downbursts often shift from
near the leading or east storm quadrant to near the southwest storm flank.
This, in turn, enhances fresh convective development along the flanking line.
The same Texas Panhandle storm has intensified to the severe
stage at this time. The tower that was on the middle-back side of the
the previous photograph has developed vigorously and become much more
than its predecessors.
[Image: multicell storm (57K)]
The rock-hard nature of both the Cb and the downwind
anvil are visual clues as to the updraft's strength. The storm was a much
larger VIP 5
on radar at this time with an increasingly tight VIP level
gradient on the southwest flank.
lemon techique (LT)