Ben Pickering

Ben Pickering


Ben Pickering is a postgraduate researcher studying hydrometeor classification (rain, snow, hail e.t.c) from the newly upgraded dual-polarisation UK radar network (C-Band, 5.60 – 5.65 GHz). Ben is focused on developing rigorous verification techniques for these categorical, discreet products. This will be achieved by developing a new framework of 'big data' observations: in-situ such as the FAAM aircraft, and ground-based observations like Met Office stations, crowdsourced weather reports and the newly installed Disdrometer Verification Network (DiVeN) for comparison. Ben developed the DiVeN network of 14 laser disdrometers in 2017 as part of his PhD work on radar verification which took several months and thousands of miles of travel around the UK to install.

Funding / Awards

Met Office MOAP Collaboration Fund (£1.25k)

NCAS Visiting Scientist Programme (£1.2k)

RMetS Legacy Fund (£1.2k)

DiVeN (£4.5k)

CASE Travel Fund (£8.0k)

NERC funded studentship with CASE sponsorship (£11.0k + £4.0k)


Jonathan Coney (2019-20) Goldmine or Bust? Crowdsourced Meteorological Data for Atmospheric Science.

Dongqi Lin (2017-18) Identifying the Microphysical Difference in UK Precipitation for Periods with and without Radar Bright Band.

Field Campaigns

TerraMaris (Jan-Feb 2021, 8 weeks)

RELAMPAGO (Nov-Dec 2018, 3 weeks)

PECAN (May-July 2015, 6 weeks)

Lead PI of DiVeN (Feb 2017 - ongoing, 3Y+ w/ renewal expected)

Disdrometer Verification Network (DiVeN)

Current Research

  • ICAS Away Day Poster (55MB) (8th October 2018)
  • RMetS PhD Student Showcase (31MB) (18th April 2018) Presenting current research to a public non-scientific audience:
  • Interview with Leeds University (8th December 2017) Talking about how the weather is forecast; why snow is difficult to forecast, my research to improve observations of snow and what it’s like to be a PhD student at Leeds.
  • RMetS Presentation on Low-Cost Instrumentation (50MB) (19th October 2017) At Birmingham University Geography Department:
  • Transfer Report (6.5MB) Before completing the first year of PhD study, students must undergo transfer from probational to full PhD status by writing a report and defending it in a viva. (July 2017)
  • RMetS 'Impact of Science' Conference Poster (3MB) (July 2017)
  • ­Transfer Presentation (49MB) As part of the formal transfer process from probational to full PhD status at the University of Leeds, students are expected to give a short seminar (20 minutes) about their project and work so far. (June 2017)

Past (completed) work


Preffered Email:
Twitter: @wx_radar


Associate Fellow of the Royal Meteorological Society

Member of the American Meteorological Society

Member of the Aerosol Society

Research interests

  • Atmospheric Radar
  • Unmanned Aerial Vehicles for Atmospheric Observations
  • Cloud Physics
  • Numerical Weather Prediction
  • Data Assimilation
  • Oppertunistic Meteorological Measurements


  • MMet (Hons), Meteorology and Climate, University of Reading

Research groups and institutes

  • Institute for Climate and Atmospheric Science