Generating cell

From Glossary of Meteorology

generating cell

In radar, a small region of locally high reflectivity from which a trail of hydrometeors originates.

It is postulated that snow crystals are formed and grow in the generating cells and that the cells are maintained by convection induced by the release of latent heat accompanying the crystal growth. The shape of the snow trail below a generating cell depends on the fall speed of the snow and the vertical profile of the horizontal wind.