Comparison of raingage-recorded and radar-derived rainfall amounts



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Texas Tech University


This thesis compares raingage-recorded rainfall data with radar-derived rainfall estimations from the Lubbock WSR-88D. This study analyzes four cases using the original radar parameters, and two cases with altered radar parameters. Data were plotted and contoured on maps of the region of interest for overall rainfall amount and areal coverage comparisons. Also, individual gages were selected for a time-series comparison of raingage and radar data. Scatter-plot diagrams were created using a linear regression to determine the statistical significance of the data. Using alternate radar parameters, two cases were selected to determine whether different parameters would produce better results.

The overall agreement between the two data platforms is very good in terms of areal coverage. However, the radar-estimated amounts varied widely compared with the raingage data. In general, the radar data were within a factor of two of the raingage data, in cases of both underestimation and overestimation. When the Z-R relationship of the WSR- 88D was changed, the results improved significantly.