Severe hailstorms pose a growing economic problem for the society due to related severe damage to buildings, agriculture and living species. Several studies found indications for an increase of hail days in the last two decades (Kunz et al. 2009) and for a significant positive trend of convective conditions over Europe (Mohr & Kunz 2013). These are backgrounds and motivation of project HAMLET (HAil Model for Europe), which is funded by the re-insurance company Tokio Millennium. The project, which started in January 2013, has a focus on the analysis of past severe hail events over six European countries and aims at creating a stochastic hail event set based on the latest scientific developments. The results will help to identify regions frequently affected by hail. We expect that the statistics of hail events will give further insight in the mechanisms decisive for the onset of deep moist convection.
To estimate the hail probability, it is intended to apply a hybrid approach, which brings together appropriate remote-sensing data (e.g. radar data and lightning data) and data from numerical weather or climate models. Since remote-sensing data are available for short time periods (~6 or 7 years) and have some limitations and constraints (shadings, material characteristics, scattering characteristics), it is attempted to evaluate hail storm tracks from high-resolution regional climate model simulations. The reanalysis data with a resolution of 2.8 x 2.8 km² were produced by the IMK-TRO working group “Regional Climate and Water Cycle”.