Observations of deep convection in the tropics using the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) precipitation radar Academic Article uri icon


  • A satellite-borne precipitation radar is used to study the penetration of convection bearing large particles to altitudes around the tropical tropopause, a region now known as the tropical tropopause layer (TTL). This overshooting convection has been identified as potentially important in the dehydration of air entering the stratosphere. The global distribution of the radar reflectivity tops in the TTL follows the interseasonal and interannual patterns of the surface precipitation rates. The amount of overshooting convection is 5% of total deep convection and 1.5% of the total convective rain. In agreement with previous studies, the radar observations show that continental convection typically extends to higher altitudes than oceanic convection. Copyright 2002 by the American Geophysical Union.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Alcala, C. M., & Dessler, A. E.

citation count

  • 124

complete list of authors

  • Alcala, CM||Dessler, AE

publication date

  • December 2002