Radar hydrology: Rainfall estimation

W. F. Krajewski, James A. Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

431 Scopus citations


Radar observations of rainfall and their use in hydrologic research provide the focus for the paper. Radar-rainfall products are crucial for input to runoff and flood prediction models, validation of satellite remote sensing algorithms, and for statistical characterization of extreme rainfall frequency. In this context we discuss the issues of radar-rainfall product development, and the theoretical and practical requirements of validating radar-rainfall maps and new radar technologies. We discuss a framework for relfectivity based rainfall estimation, including estimation of uncertainty of radar-rainfall estimates. Validation of radar-rainfall products is a major challenge for broad utilization of these products in hydrologic applications. In the discussion of radar-rainfall prediction we focus on orographically induced extreme rainfall and flooding, discuss the issues of detection, statistical sample size, and scale effects. We conclude the paper with a set of recommendations for research priorities and experimental requirements to address them.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1387-1394
Number of pages8
JournalAdvances in Water Resources
Issue number8-12
StatePublished - 2002

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Water Science and Technology


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