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Scattering of radiowaves by a melting layer of precipitation in backward and forward directions

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1 Author(s)
Zhang, Wei ; Radio Lab., Helsinki Univ. of Technol., Espoo, Finland

A melting layer of precipitation is composed of melting snowflakes (snow particles); the assumption of spherical particles along with mass conservation is used. The melting layer is studied by deriving the size distribution of the melting snow particles, the thickness of a melting layer, the density of a dry snow particle, and the average dielectric constant of a melting snow particle. Vertical profiles of radar reflectivity and specific attenuation are computed at 1-100 GHz by using the Mie theory for five raindrop size distributions at rain rates below 12.5 mm/h. The radar bright band is explained with computed radar reflectivities at 3-10 GHz. It is shown that the radar bright band can be absent in the melting layer at frequencies above 20 GHz. This agrees with radar observations at 35 and 94 GHz. The specific attenuation, as well as the average specific attenuation of the melting layer, is divided into absorption part and scattering part. The latter is increasingly significant with the increase of frequency. The total zenith attenuation due to stratiform rain is divided into the rain zenith attenuation and the additional zenith attenuation, which is the difference between zenith attenuation, due to the melting layer, and attenuation, due to the same path length of the resulting rain. The additional zenith attenuation increases with the increase of rain rate even at frequencies above 20 GHz. This should be taken into account in radar remote sensing and satellite-Earth communications

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Antennas and Propagation, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:42 ,  Issue: 3 )