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Regional and Mesoscale Meteorology Branch

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Convective Downbursts


Ken Pryor



Archived Training





Last Updated:



The objective of this session is to better understand and utilize techniques for predicting the risk of convective downbursts using GOES sounder derived product data.

Training Session Options

NOAA/NWS students – to begin the training, use the web-based videoYouTube video, or audio playback options below (if present for this session). Certificates of completion for NOAA/NWS employees can be obtained by accessing the session via the Commerce Learn Center

  1. Audio playback (recommended for low-bandwidth users) – This is an audio playback version in the form of a downloadable VISITview and can be taken at anytime.

    Create a directory to download the audio playback file (32 MB) from the following link:

    After extracting the files into that directory click on either the visitplay.bat or visitauto.bat file to start the lesson. If both files are present, use visitauto.bat

References/Additional Links

  • Talking points are available for this lesson and may be printed out to easily review the session in detail at any time.
  • GOES Sounding Point Retrievals in AWIPS VISIT session
  • Papers in
  • Atkins, N.T., and R.M. Wakimoto, 1991: Wet microburst activity over the southeastern United States: Implications for forecasting. Wea. Forecasting, 6, 470-482.
  • Caracena, F., and J.A. Flueck, 1988: Classifying and forecasting microburst activity in the Denver area. J. Aircraft, 25, 525-530.
  • Caracena, F., R.L. Holle, and C.A. Doswell, cited 2009: Microbursts-A handbook for visual identification. Available online at
  • Doswell, C.A., 2001: Severe convective storms- An overview. Severe Convective Storms, C.A. Doswell, Ed., Amer. Meteor. Soc., 1-26.
  • Ellrod, G. P., 1989: Environmental conditions associated with the Dallas microburst storm determined from satellite soundings. Wea. Forecasting, 4, 469-484.
  • Ellrod, G.P., J.P. Nelson, M.R. Witiw, L. Bottos, and W.P. Roeder, 2000: Experimental GOES sounder products for the assessment of downburst potential. Wea. Forecasting, 15, 527-542.
  • Fujita, T.T., and R.M. Wakimoto, 1983: Microbursts in JAWS depicted by Doppler radars, PAM and aerial photographs. Preprints, 21st Conf. on Radar Meteorology, Edmonton, Amer. Meteor. Soc., 638-645.
  • McCann, D.W., 1994: WINDEX-A new index for forecasting microburst potential. Wea. Forecasting, 9, 532-541.
  • Pryor, K.L., 2011: Microburst Nowcasting Applications of GOES. NOAA Technical Report NESDIS 140
  • Pryor, K.L., 2008a: An initial assessment of the GOES Microburst Windspeed Potential Index. Preprints, 5th GOES Users’ Conf., New Orleans, LA, Amer. Meteor. Soc.
  • Pryor, K.L., 2008b: A GOES imager-derived microburst product. arXiv:0802.3340v3 []
  • Wakimoto, R.M., 1985: Forecasting dry microburst activity over the high plains. Mon. Wea. Rev., 113, 1131-1143.
  • Wakimoto, R.M., 2001: Convectively Driven High Wind Events. Severe Convective Storms, C.A. Doswell, Ed., Amer. Meteor. Soc., 255-298.
This course is Basic

There are no prerequisites

Page Contact

Bernie Connell


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