A new generation of smaller, highly capable radar systems in the Dallas/Fort Worth area is able to track with more accuracy the location of tornadoes and other severe weather conditions, such as heavy rain and ice storms, compared to other systems. These new systems are spaced much closer together than current radar sensors, which are typically 100 to 200 miles apart. The closer proximity is part of the reason the new systems can catch a tornado that could be missed by current radar.
With support from a National Science Foundation (NSF) Engineering Research Center award, the new technology was developed over 10 years by a multidisciplinary group of engineers and scientists at the Center for Collaborative Adaptive Sensing of the Atmosphere (CASA). The center is led by the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, with core partners Colorado State University, University of Oklahoma, University of Puerto Rico, and University of Colorado, Colorado Springs.
"Installing a system in Dallas/Fort Worth allows us to demonstrate the benefits of the system for urban flash flooding response," says V. Chandrasekar, CASA deputy director and a professor at Colorado State University.
Video: Improved radar systems could save lives and money when severe weather strikes (2015, March 24)
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Video: Improved radar systems could save lives and money when severe weather strikes