14.1 The Dual-polarization Radar Upgrade: Operational Benefits Seen Thusfar

Thursday, 27 January 2011: 3:30 PM
606 (Washington State Convention Center)
Paul T. Schlatter, NOAA/NWS, Norman, OK; and L. R. Lemon, C. D. Payne, and C. A. Van Den Broeke

The upgrade to dual polarization technology (dual-pol) on all National Weather Service radars is in beta test, which began in November 2010 in Wichita, Kansas. The Warning Decision Training Branch, the Office of Science and Technology, and the Radar Operations Center have been working hard along with the contractor in order to ensure that the dual-pol radar data after the upgrade does not affect the overall appearance or effectiveness of the legacy, single polarization radar products. The dual-pol NEXRAD prototype in Norman Oklahoma (KOUN), has been providing data throughout 2010. Central Oklahoma saw some amazing weather events occur while KOUN was collecting data, including significant winter weather, flash flooding, tornado outbreaks, and damaging hail storms. In addition to providing an upate on the status of the upgrade, this talk examines the operational benefits displayed while KOUN was being tested in 2010. The quality of the dual-pol radar data in a operational setting that saw several unusual, high impact events is unparalleled.
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