Severe Hailstorms Are Associated with Very Strong Winds Between 6,000 and 12,000 Meters

  1. Helmut Weickmann
  1. H. Dessens

Published Online: 18 MAR 2013

DOI: 10.1029/GM005p0333

Physics of Precipitation: Proceedings of the Cloud Physics Conference, Woods Hole, Massachusetts, June 3-5, 1959

Physics of Precipitation: Proceedings of the Cloud Physics Conference, Woods Hole, Massachusetts, June 3-5, 1959

How to Cite

Dessens, H. (1960) Severe Hailstorms Are Associated with Very Strong Winds Between 6,000 and 12,000 Meters, in Physics of Precipitation: Proceedings of the Cloud Physics Conference, Woods Hole, Massachusetts, June 3-5, 1959 (ed H. Weickmann), American Geophysical Union, Washington D. C.. doi: 10.1029/GM005p0333

Author Information

  1. Observatoire Du Puy De DôMe, Clermont-Ferrand, France

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 18 MAR 2013
  2. Published Print: 1 JAN 1960

Book Series:

  1. Geophysical Monograph Series

Book Series Editors:

  1. Waldo E. Smith

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9780875900056

Online ISBN: 9781118668931

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Keywords:

  • Atmospheric aerosol particles;
  • Frequency distribution of wind speeds;
  • Hailstorms;
  • Structure of hailstorm;
  • Transformation of thunderstorm

Summary

Both physical and statistical studies indicate that the factor which transforms thunderstorms into severe hailstorms is a very strong horizontal wind at levels between 6,000 and 12,000 m. A structure for the hailstorm is suggested, in which the ‘chimney' updraft of the Cumulonimbus is considered as forming a link between two main sources of energy: in the lower part, the instability and the latent heat of condensation and of freezing; in the upper part, the kinetic energy of the strong wind.

In any given region, on certain days thunderstorms cause a very light or moderate damage by hail; on other days the damage is widespread and greatly increased. Furthermore there are regions of the world where thunderstorms are very frequent and violent but where hail is extremely rare. We have tried here to delineate a factor or factors which transform an ordinary thunderstorm into a destructive hailstorm.