85th AMS Annual Meeting

Monday, 10 January 2005: 4:00 PM
The Volume Coverage Pattern Explorer: A New Tool for Visualizing Radar Beam Paths
Kevin L. Manross, CIMMS/Univ. of Oklahoma and NOAA/NSSL, Norman, OK; and J. LaDue and G. J. Stumpf
Poster PDF (415.6 kB)
The Warning Decision Training Branch (WDTB) and the National Severe Storms Laboratory (NSSL) have developed a new interactive tool to aid National Weather Service (NWS) forcasters in understanding Weather Survellience Radar-1988 Doppler (WSR-88D) beam propagation paths. Using a platform-independent Java program, which includes the Java Vis-AD package and Geographical Information Systems (GIS) terrain maps, forcasters can visualize the path of a WSR-88D beam and how it may interact with the terrain surrounding the radar. The Volume Coverage Pattern Explorer (VCPExplorer) allows the user to select any radar elevation angle and displays that beam - along with a two-dimensional beam width - on a Range Height Indicator (RHI) display. The beam and beam width are overlaid on a dynamically changing terrain cross section. Terrain blockage can be displayed on a Plan Projection Indicator (PPI) display, overlaying the terrain. Additionally, all beams in a preset, or user-defined, Volume Coverage Pattern (VCP) can be display at once. Newer features are being added to this tool including ray path tracing from soundings, and a tool to study the effects of vertical sampling on reflectivity-based derived product algorithms.

Supplementary URL: http://www.cimms.ou.edu/~kmanross/VCPRPE/