Article ID: 2018-041
Convective initiation (CI) nowcasting often has a low probability of detection (POD) and a high false-alarm ratio (FAR) at sub-tropical regions where the warm-rain processes often occur. Using the high spatial- and temporal-resolution and multi-spectral data from the Advanced Himawari Imager (AHI) on board Japanese new-generation geostationary satellite Himawari-8, a stand-alone CI nowcasting algorithm is developed in this study. The AHI-based CI algorithm utilizes the reflectance observations from channels 1 (0.47 μm) and 7 (3.9 μm), brightness temperature observations from infrared window channel 13 (10.4 μm), the dual-spectral differences between channels 10 (7.3 μm) and 13, 13 and 15 (12.4 μm), as well as a tri-spectral combination of channels 11, 15 and 13, as CI predictors without relying on any dynamic ancillary data (e.g., cloud type and atmospheric motion vector products). The proposed AHI-based algorithm is applied to CI cases over Fujian province in the Southeastern China. When validated by S-band radar observations, the CI algorithm produced a POD as high as 93.33 %, and a FAR as low as 33.33 % for a CI case day that occurred on 1 August 2015 over Northern Fujian. For over 216 CI events that occurred in a three-month period from July to September 2015, the CI nowcasting lead time has a mean value of ~64 minutes, with a longest lead time over 120 minutes. It is suggested that false-alarm nowcasts that occur in the presence of capping inversion require further investigation and algorithm enhancements.