32nd Conference on Broadcast Meteorology/31st Conference on Radar Meteorology/Fifth Conference on Coastal Atmospheric and Oceanic Prediction and Processes

Friday, 8 August 2003: 5:15 PM
Automated real-time monitoring of radar sensitivity and antenna pointing accuracy
Tim Darlington, Met Office, Bracknell, United Kingdom; and M. Kitchen, J. Sugier, and J. de Rohan-Truba
Poster PDF (104.0 kB)
Established methods of checking weather radar sensitivity and pointing accuracy have been adapted so that they can run automatically at a central location and utilise the normal operational radar data output. The advantages of this approach are that many problems with the radar hardware can be detected quickly and cheaply, without the need for site visits or deployment of specialist radar engineers. Permanent ground clutter caused by structures in the radar field of view are used to check the sensitivity calibration and the signals from the sun is used to check the radar antenna pointing. The methods are now practical because the capacity of modern communications networks can support the transfer of raw polar-format data to a central analysis centre. Their implementation is described and examples provided which demonstrate both their power and limitations.

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