142 A New Radar Control System for NCAR/EOL S-POL and CSU-CHILL

Monday, 16 September 2013
Breckenridge Ballroom (Peak 14-17, 1st Floor) / Event Tent (Outside) (Beaver Run Resort and Conference Center)
Joseph VanAndel, NCAR, Boulder, CO; and D. Brunkow

Handout (17.9 MB)

NCAR-EOL's S-Pol and CSU-CHILL's radar groups have worked together for the last several years to share technical development efforts. These shared development projects have reduced the costs of operating each facility, while increasing the capabilities of each radar.

NCAR-EOL's S-Pol and CSU-CHILL have developed a radar control system used on both radars. CSU-CHILL staff developed an antenna controller by writing software for an industrial motion control system and writing a high level "System Controller" task. S-Pol staff wrote a Graphical User Interface that both groups use to control their radars.

This radar control system was deployed on S-Pol for the DYNAMO field project and received positive reviews from operators and project scientists. CSU-CHILL is also using this radar control system.

S-Pol will soon be located at the new Firestone site, in Weld County, CO, where S-Pol and CSU-CHILL will form the Front Range Observational Network Testbed (FRONT). S-Pol will be made remotely operable with unattended operation to allow increased data collection while reducing staffing costs.

Novel features of the radar control system include:

1) A web based GUI that runs on any computer with a modern web browser.

2) Remote control of system hardware allowing remote startup of the antenna and transmitter

3) Continuous monitoring of radar hardware, computer hardware and software subsystems. This monitoring system was built using the Open Monitoring Distribution (OMD) which provides a web-based GUI. The monitoring systems alerts engineers and technicians via email or text messages when problems are detected.

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