Articles | Volume 16, issue 14
Research article
17 Jul 2023
Research article |  | 17 Jul 2023

How observations from automatic hail sensors in Switzerland shed light on local hailfall duration and compare with hailpad measurements

Jérôme Kopp, Agostino Manzato, Alessandro Hering, Urs Germann, and Olivia Martius

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Cited articles

Allen, J. T., Giammanco, I. M., Kumjian, M. R., Jurgen Punge, H., Zhang, Q., Groenemeijer, P., Kunz, M., and Ortega, K.: Understanding Hail in the Earth System, Rev. Geophys., 58, e2019RG000665,, 2020. a
Barras, H., Hering, A., Martynov, A., Noti, P.-A., Germann, U., and Martius, O.: Experiences with >50,000 Crowdsourced Hail Reports in Switzerland, B. Am. Meteorol. Soc., 100, 1429–1440,, 2019. a, b, c, d
Besic, N., Figueras i Ventura, J., Grazioli, J., Gabella, M., Germann, U., and Berne, A.: Hydrometeor classification through statistical clustering of polarimetric radar measurements: a semi-supervised approach, Atmos. Meas. Tech., 9, 4425–4445,, 2016. a
Brimelow, J.: Hail and Hailstorms, in: Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Climate Science, Oxford University Press,, 2018. a, b
Brown, T., Giammanco, I., and Kumjian, M.: IBHS Hail Field Research Program: 2012–2014, 27th Conference on Severe Local Storms, 2–7 November 2014, Madison, USA, AMS, (last access: 14 July 2023), 2014. a
Short summary
We present the first study of extended field observations made by a network of 80 automatic hail sensors from Switzerland. The sensors record the exact timing of hailstone impacts, providing valuable information about the local duration of hailfall. We found that the majority of hailfalls lasts just a few minutes and that most hailstones, including the largest, fall during a first phase of high hailstone density, while a few remaining and smaller hailstones fall in a second low-density phase.