Kinetic energy flux associated wiht natural and simulated rainfall events and instrumentation used in the evaluation
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There have been many studies that focus on the evaluation of the raindrop-size distribution and the parameters that are based upon this distribution, ranging from radar reflectivity to kinetic energy flux at the surface. The main focus of this study was to analyze several naturally occurring and simulated rainfall events using rainfall detection equipment such as a Rain Imaging System and a Parsivel Disdrometer to determine how critical accurate observation of the drop-size distribution is in the assessment of the kinetic energy. Some of the objectives were to evaluate the accuracy of each instrument and, for each event, to determine the total kinetic energy flux at the surface as well as some of the attributes that affect it. It was shown that the kinetic energy flux is not solely a function of rainfall rate; rather, it is also a function of the drop-size distribution. It was noticed that events with similar storm structures tended to have very similar drop-size distributions as well as maximum drop sizes. Using rainfall simulators it was possible to compare the simulated distribution to that of the naturally occurring distribution and to calibrate the instrumentation to ensure that accuracy was being achieved; however, it was found that the Rain Imaging System did not perform with satisfactory results.