Probabilistic forecasts of winter thunderstorms around Amsterdam Airport Schiphol
The development and verification of a probabilistic forecast system for winter thunderstorms around Amsterdam Airport Schiphol is described. We have used Model Output Statistics (MOS) to develop the probabilistic forecast equations. The MOS system consists of 32 logistic regression equations, i.e. for two forecast periods (0–6 h and 6–12 h), four 90×80 km 2 regions around Amsterdam Airport Schiphol, and four 6-h time periods. For the predictand quality-controlled Surveillance et Alerte Foudre par Interférométrie Radioélectrique (SAFIR) total lightning data were used. The potential predictors were calculated from postprocessed output of two numerical weather prediction (NWP) models – i.e. the High-Resolution Limited-Area Model (HIRLAM) and the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) model – and from an ensemble of advected lightning and radar data (0–6 h projections only). The predictors that are selected most often are the HIRLAM Boyden index, the square root of the ECMWF 3-h and 6-h convective precipitation sum, the HIRLAM convective available potential energy (CAPE) and two radar advection predictors. An objective verification was done, from which it can be concluded that the MOS system is skilful. The forecast system runs at the Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute (KNMI) on an experimental basis, with the primary objective to warn aircraft pilots for potential aircraft induced lightning (AIL) risk during winter.