Thunderstorms - isolated vs. scattered?
What's the difference between isolated & scattered thunderstorms? Does scattered mean off & on throughout the day, & isolated mean just at one time during the day (such as morning or evening, etc)?
- Michel VerheugheLv 71 decade agoFavorite Answer
I don't think it has anything to do with the period of time; rather, the coverage.
Reporting weather observations has been done internationally for more than a century. Because of that, a standard way of describing the sky exists. Today it can still be seen in maritime or aviation reports (the latter, called METAR). It uses the following shorthand:
CLR - clear of clouds
FEW - few clouds, i.e. less than a quarter of the sky
SCT - scattered. Less than half of the sky
BRK - broken. More than half of the sky
OVC - overcast.
I think that US meteorologists use something similar for thunderstorms:
Isolated: less than a quarter of the area covered by thunderstorm cells, and
Scattered: less than half of the area covered by thunderstorm cells.