Lightning Strike Location Identification Based on 3D Weather Radar Data

Mingyue Lu, Yadong Zhang, Zaiyang Ma, Manzhu Yu, Min Chen, Jianqin Zheng, Menglong Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Lightning is an instantaneous, intense, and convective weather phenomenon that can produce great destructive power and easily cause serious economic losses and casualties. It always occurs in convective storms with small spatial scales and short life cycles. Weather radar is one of the best operational instruments that can monitor the detailed 3D structures of convective storms at high spatial and temporal resolutions. Thus, extracting the features related to lightning automatically from 3D weather radar data to identify lightning strike locations would significantly benefit future lightning predictions. This article makes a bold attempt to apply three-dimensional radar data to identify lightning strike locations, thereby laying the foundation for the subsequent accurate and real-time prediction of lightning locations. First, that issue is transformed into a binary classification problem. Then, a suitable dataset for the recognition of lightning strike locations based on 3D radar data is constructed for system training and evaluation purposes. Furthermore, the machine learning methods of a convolutional neural network, logistic regression, a random forest, and k-nearest neighbors are employed to carry out experiments. The results show that the convolutional neural network has the best performance in identifying lightning strike locations. This technique is followed by the random forest and k-nearest neighbors, and the logistic regression produces the worst manifestation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number714067
JournalFrontiers in Environmental Science
StatePublished - Aug 4 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Environmental Science


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