Asia-Pacific Journal of Atmospheric Sciences

, Volume 50, Supplement 1, pp 595–607 | Cite as

Polarimetric rainfall retrieval from a C-Band weather radar in a tropical environment (The Philippines)

  • I. Crisologo
  • G. Vulpiani
  • C. C. Abon
  • C. P. C. David
  • A. Bronstert
  • Maik HeistermannEmail author


We evaluated the potential of polarimetric rainfall retrieval methods for the Tagaytay C-Band weather radar in the Philippines. For this purpose, we combined a method for fuzzy echo classification, an approach to extract and reconstruct the differential propagation phase, Φ DP , and a polarimetric self-consistency approach to calibrate horizontal and differential reflectivity. The reconstructed Φ DP was used to estimate path-integrated attenuation and to retrieve the specific differential phase, K DP . All related algorithms were transparently implemented in the Open Source radar processing software wradlib. Rainfall was then estimated from different variables: from re-calibrated reflectivity, from re-calibrated reflectivity that has been corrected for path-integrated attenuation, from the specific differential phase, and from a combination of reflectivity and specific differential phase. As an additional benchmark, rainfall was estimated by interpolating the rainfall observed by rain gauges. We evaluated the rainfall products for daily and hourly accumulations. For this purpose, we used observations of 16 rain gauges from a five-month period in the 2012 wet season. It turned out that the retrieval of rainfall from K DP substantially improved the rainfall estimation at both daily and hourly time scales. The measurement of reflectivity apparently was impaired by severe miscalibration while K DP was immune to such effects. Daily accumulations of rainfall retrieved from K DP showed a very low estimation bias and small random errors. Random scatter was, though, strongly present in hourly accumulations.

Key words

Dual-Pol weather radar quantitative precipitation estimation differential propagation phase attenuation The Philippines 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Arlot, S., and A. Celisse, 2010: A survey of cross-validation procedures for model selection. Stat. Surv., 4, 40–79.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Bertonasco, M. A. A., R. Notarpietro, M. Gabella, and U. Germann, 2013: Rainfall estimation improvements using polarization data from monte lema C-band weather radar in the Southern European Alps. 2013 International Conference on Electromagnetics in Advanced Applications (ICEAA), 923–926.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bringi, V. N., and V. Chandrasekar, 2001: Polarimetric doppler weather radar. Cambridge University Press, 636 pp.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bringi, V. N., and V. Chandrasekar, N. Balakrishnan, and D. S. Zrnic, 1990: An examination of propagation effects in rainfall on radar measurements at microwave frequencies. J. Atmos. Oceanic Technol., 7, 829–840.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Carey, L. D., S. A. Rutledge, and D. A. Ahijevych, 2000: Correcting propagation effects in C-band polarimetric radar observations of tropical convection using differential propagation phase. J. Appl. Meteorol., 39, 1405–1433.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Cifelli, R., V. Chandrasekhar, S. Lim, P. Kennedy, Y. Wang, and S. Rutledge, 2011: A new dual-polarization radar rainfall algorithm: Application in Colorado precipitation events. J. Atmos. Oceanic Technol., 28, 352–364.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Efron, B., and R. J. Tibshirani, 1994: An Introduction to the Bootstrap. CRC Press, Boca Raton, Florida, 456 pp.Google Scholar
  8. Fulton, R. A., J. P. Breidenbach, D.-J. Seo, D. A. Miller, and T. O’Bannon, 1998: The WSR-88D Rainfall Algorithm. Wea. Forecasting, 13, 377–395.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Giangrande, S., and A. Ryzhkov, 2008: Estimation of rainfall based on the results of polarimetric echo classification. J. Appl. Meteorol., 47, 2445–2462.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Gorgucci, E., G. Scarchilli, and V. Chandrasekar, 1999: A procedure to calibrate multiparameter weather radar using properties of the rain medium. IEEE Trans. Geosci. Remote Sens., 37, 269–276.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Gourley, J. J., P. Tabary, and J. P. du Chatelet, 2007: A fuzzy logic algorithm for the separation of precipitating from nonprecipitating echoes using polarimetric radar observations. J. Atmos. Oceanic Technol., 24, 1439–1451.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Gourley, J. J., A. J. Illingworth, and P. Tabary, 2009: Absolute calibration of radar reflectivity using redundancy of the polarization observations and implied constraints on drop shapes. J. Atmos. Oceanic Technol., 26, 689–703.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Heistermann, M., S. Jacobi, and T. Pfaff, 2013b: Technical note: An open source library for processing weather radar data (wradlib). Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 17, 863–871.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Heistermann, M., I. Crisologo, C. C. Abon, B. A. Racoma, S. Jacobi, N. T. Servando, C. P. C. David, and A. Bronstert, 2013a: Brief communication: Using the new Philippine radar network to reconstruct the “Habagat of August 2012” monsoon event around Metropolitan Manila. Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 13, 653–657, doi: 10.5194/nhess-13-653-2013.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Heistermann, M., and Coauthors, 2014: The emergence of open source software for the weather radar community. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., early online release, Scholar
  16. Matrosov, S., R. Cifelli, and D. Gochis, 2013: Measurements of heavy convective rainfall in the presence of hail in flood-prone areas using an X-band polarimetric radar. J. Appl. Meteor. Climatol., 52, 395–407.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Ryzhkov, A., and D. Zrni, 1996: Assessment of rainfall measurement that uses specific differential phase. J. Appl. Meteorol., 35, 2080–2090.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Ryzhkov, A., V., S. Giangrande, and T. J. Schuur, 2005: Rainfall estimation with a polarimetric prototype of WSR-88D. J. Appl. Meteorol., 44, 502–515.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Ryzhkov, A., M. Diederich, P. Zhang, and C. Simmer, 2014: Potential utilization of specific attenuation for rainfall estimation, mitigation of partial beam blockage, and radar networking. J. Atmos. Oceanic Technol., 31, 599–619.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Schuur, T. J., A. V. Ryzhkov, P. L. Heinselman, D. W. Burgess, and K. A. Scharfenberg, 2014: The joint polarization experiment- A summary of dual-polarization WSR-88D radar data collection and analysis. Proceedings of the 20th International Conference on Interactive Information and Processing Systems (IIPS) for Meteorology, Oceanography, and Hydrology, Seattle, WA. URL: Scholar
  21. Shepherd, G. W., J. Searson, A. Pallot, and C. G. Collier, 1995: The performance of a C-band weather radar during a line convection event. Meteor. Appl., 2, 65–69.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Smyth, T. J., and A. J. Illingworth, 1998: Correction for attenuation of radar reflectivity using polarization data. Quart. J. Roy. Meteor. Soc., 124, 2393–2415.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Testud, J., E. Le Bouar, E. Obligis, and M. Ali-Mehenni, 2000: The rain profiling algorithm applied to polarimetric weather radar. J. Atmos. Oceanic Technol., 17, 332–356.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Vivekanandan, J., G. Zhang, and S.M. Ellis, S. Avery and D. Rajopadyahya, 2003: Radar reflectivity calibration using differential propagation phase measurement. Radio Sci., 38(3).Google Scholar
  25. Vulpiani, G., and L. Baldini, 2013: Observations of a severe hail-bearing storm by an operational X-band polarimetric radar in the Mediterranean area, Proceedings of the 36th Conference on Radar Meteorology, 16–20 September, 2013, Breckenridge, Colorado. URL: Scholar
  26. Vulpiani, G., P. Tabary, J. P. D. Chatelet, and F. S. Marzano, 2008: Comparison of advanced radar polarimetric techniques for operational attenuation correction at C band. J. Atmos. Oceanic Technol., 25, 1118–1135.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Vulpiani, G., M. Montopoli, L. D. Passeri, A. G. Gioia, P. Giordano, and F. S. Marzano, 2012: On the use of dual-polarized C-band radar for operational rainfall retrieval in mountainous areas. J. Appl. Meteor. Climatol., 51, 405–425.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Wang, Y., and V. Chandrasekar, 2009: Algorithm for estimation of the specific differential phase. J. Atmos. Oceanic Technol., 26, 2565–2578.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Wang, Y., J. Zhang, A. Ryzhkov, and L. Tang, 2013: C-band polarimetric radar QPE based on specific differential propagation phase for extreme typhoon rainfall. J. Atmos. Oceanic Technol., 30, 1354–1370.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. World Bank, 2013: Strengthening hydro-meteorological services in Southeast Asia — Country assessment report for the Philippines. Joint Report of World Bank, UNISDR, and WMO. URL: [last accessed: September 2013].Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Korean Meteorological Society and Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • I. Crisologo
    • 1
  • G. Vulpiani
    • 2
  • C. C. Abon
    • 1
    • 3
  • C. P. C. David
    • 1
  • A. Bronstert
    • 3
  • Maik Heistermann
    • 3
    Email author
  1. 1.National Institute of Geological SciencesUniversity of the Philippines DilimanQuezon CityPhilippines
  2. 2.Department of Civil ProtectionPresidency of the Council of MinistersRomeItaly
  3. 3.Institute of Earth and Environmental SciencesUniversity of PotsdamPotsdamGermany

Personalised recommendations