Since things were kinda boring over HGX today I had to look for things to blog about. Here is something interesting that I noticed with the Vis/IR Sandwich RGB. At the beginning of the loop the RGB didn’t show any IR brightness temperatures. As the TCU continued to develop we saw pixels of IR brightness temperatures starting to show up indicating cold cloud tops and the potential for glaciation to start. Low and behold, if we continue to watch the loop, more pixels start showing up…and a few minutes later both GLM and ground based networks picked up on a couple of CGs. As the thunderstorm developed, cloud tops cooled and more pixels started getting displayed we began to see more lightning. This was something that I didn’t expect the RGB to pick up on and potentially helpful for situational awareness and IDSS in the west where most lightning tends to come from single cell thunderstorms. If you are able to pick up on these ahead of time you may be able to some lead time before lightning occurs.
Update…it happened again, pixels starting being displayed and then lightning occurred within a couple of minutes. If this generally hold true for single cell thunderstorms this would be awesome for outdoor IDSS.