An electrical and polarimetric analysis of the overland reintensification of Tropical Storm Erin (2007)

Erica M. Griffin, Terry J. Schuur, Donald R. MacGorman, Matthew R. Kumjian, Alexandre O. Fierro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


While passing over central Oklahoma on 18-19 August 2007, the remnants of Tropical Storm Erin unexpectedly reintensified and developed an eyelike feature that was clearly discernable in Weather Surveillance Radar-1988 Doppler (WSR-88D) imagery. During this brief reintensification period, Erin traversed a region of dense surface and remote sensing observation networks that provided abundant data of high spatial and temporal resolution. This study analyzes data from the polarimetric KOUN S-band radar, total lightning data from the Oklahoma Lightning Mapping Array, and ground-flash lightning data from the National Lightning Detection Network. Erin's reintensification was atypical since it occurred well inland and was accompanied by stronger maximum sustained winds and gusts (25 and 37 m s-1, respectively) and lower minimum sea level pressure (1001.3 hPa) than while over water. Radar observations reveal several similarities to those documented in mature tropical cyclones over open water, including outward-sloping eyewall convection, near 0-dBZ reflectivities within the eye, and relatively large updraft velocities in the eyewall as inferred from single-Doppler winds and ZDR columns. Deep, electrified convection near the center of circulation preceded the formation of Erin's eye, with maximum lightning activity occurring prior to and during reintensification. The results show that inner-core convection may have played a role in the reinvigoration of the storm.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2321-2344
Number of pages24
JournalMonthly Weather Review
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Atmospheric Science


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