Weather RADAR Video Disdrometer
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Weather RADAR and
Rainfall Measurements

Weather RADAR

IERSD/NOA owns unique equipment for the in situ measurement and remote sensing of rainfall. This equipment includes a mobile weather radar, a 2-D video disdrometer and a network of rain gauges with data loggers.

The X-POL weather radar system is an X-band (3.2 cm wavelength) dual polarization Doppler radar unit mounted on the flatbed of a truck. The radar was manufactured by Binet Inc. in cooperation with NCAR, USA. The range of the system is selectable up 150km, with resolution down to 30m and a maximum angle rotation of the antenna at 25 deg/sec. The simultaneous horizontal and vertical polarization transmission allows fast antenna scanning without compromising the quality of polarimetric measurements. Radar direct measured quantities include horizontal and vertical polarization reflectivity, Doppler velocity, spectral width, and differential phase shift. The system can give estimations in high resolution of the distribution of precipitation distinguishing between liquid and solid state of water as well as the wind field. These characteristics make it ideal for hydrometeorological studies, agricultural applications and air traffic control. In the past years X-POL has been successfully used in collaboration with University of Connecticut in field programs in USA, including the NASA-CAMEX Keys Area Microphysics Project (KAMP) and the NSF funded International H2O Project (IHOP) in Western Oklahoma.

Video Disdrometer

NOA's 2-D video disdrometer is also one of a small number of such instruments worldwide. The disdrometer was manufactured by the Johanneum Research Institute for Applied Systems Technology, Austria.

It uses two light beams in orthogonal arrangement and fast line-scan cameras to record the shape of particles falling through the light beams. The system has a resolution of 0.2mm and estimates the fall velocity, the horizontal velocity, the diameter, the oblateness and the canting angle of each particle, the dropsize distribution and the rain rate with an accuracy of better than 10%. The disdrometer and the rain gauges provide reference measurements of rain characteristics for calibration and validation of the measurements of the X-POL radar.




















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