The FLASH Project: Using lightning data to better understand and predict flash floods

C. Price*, Y. Yair, A. Mugnai, K. Lagouvardos, M. C. Llasat, S. Michaelides, U. Dayan, S. Dietrich, E. Galanti, L. Garrote, N. Harats, D. Katsanos, M. Kohn, V. Kotroni, M. Llasat-Botija, B. Lynn, L. Mediero, E. Morin, K. Nicolaides, S. RozalisK. Savvidou, B. Ziv

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations

Abstract

The FLASH project was implemented from 2006 to 2010 under the EU FP6 framework. The project focused on using lightning observations to better understand and predict convective storms that result in flash floods. As part of the project 23 case studies of flash floods in the Mediterranean region were examined. For the analysis of these storms lightning data from the ZEUS network were used together with satellite derived rainfall estimates in order to understand the storm development and electrification. In addition, these case studies were simulated using mesoscale meteorological models to better understand the meteorological and synoptic conditions leading up to these intense storms. As part of this project tools for short term predictions (nowcasts) of intense convection across the Mediterranean and Europe, and long term forecasts (a few days) of the likelihood of intense convection were developed. The project also focused on educational outreach through our website http://flashproject.org supplying real time lightning observations, real time experimental nowcasts, forecasts and educational materials. While flash floods and intense thunderstorms cannot be prevented as the climate changes, long-range regional lightning networks can supply valuable data, in real time, for warning end-users and stakeholders of imminent intense rainfall and possible flash floods.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)898-911
Number of pages14
JournalEnvironmental Science and Policy
Volume14
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2011

Keywords

  • Climate change
  • FLASH
  • Flash flood
  • Lightning
  • Thunderstorms

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