Satellite observations and ESWD

Martin Setvák and Vesa Nietosvaara, chairs of CWG

Various new satellite products or applications, as well as satellite-related research studies require (among other) ground-truth data for their verification, namely when dealing with severe weather produced by convective storms. For these purposes, typically data from official weather station reports, hailpad networks, field campaign networks, weather radars, and data from insurance companies are being used. Though, due to the nature of deep convective storms, the most significant weather may affect rather small areas only, with a high chance of not being recorded by regular observations of professional weather stations and their networks. For this reason, data from alternate or additional sources may be needed, to increase the density of ground observations. One of such possible data sources is the European Severe Weather Database (ESWD,, managed by the ESSL.

Presently, only several of European national weather services (NWS) officially contribute to ESWD (, which makes the use of ESWD records somewhat problematic, not covering parts of Europe as needed. In order to enhance the usability and reliability of ESWD data for satellite-related studies, the chairs of the Convection Working Group wish to encourage those NWS (or any other official meteorological institutions) which do not contribute yet to the ESWD, to consider their possible collaboration with or contributions to the ESWD. More representative and comprehensive ESWD database is likely to result in more reliable satellite products, and may as well contribute to better understanding of satellite-observed storm-top processes and phenomena and their significance for nowcasting applications.