Thursday, April 7, 2011

Salt Lake Valley Convection

It has been arcing and sparking the past couple of hours over the Salt Lake Valley.  The radar loop shows several rapidly developing, short-lived convective cells moving northward through the valley.

There's even some white stuff (mostly graupel) falling at times here at the U and we were treated to a loud crackle of thunder during our weekly seminar.

The pattern right now is great for "rapid reload."  The surface boundary is in northern Utah county, but high CAPE air continues to stream over it, resulting in convective initiation near or over Salt Lake County.

Mesowest surface plot with temperature to left
and dewpoint to right.
Why we're seeing cellular convection rather than a line of convection forming on the surface boundary is unclear.  Perhaps the boundary does not extend to the level of free convection, so further lifting is needed  for convection to trigger?  I'm a mountain weather guy, not a storm chaser, so I'm grasping at straws...

No comments:

Post a Comment