Dual-Pol Doppler Upgrades Complete Across the United States

| June 26, 2013

As the month of April ended, big news was coming out from the National Weather Service about the completed Dual-Polarization upgrades to all 122 Doppler Radars across the United States. The new advanced technology is helping federal weather forecasters more accurately track, assess and warn the public of approaching high impact weather. These upgrades started after years of research with dual-pol that helped develop 14 new radar products that have improved speed, understanding and accuracy of the information provided about extreme weather.

Meteorologists now have more confidence to accurately assess weather events and be more descriptive in weather warnings, which will help improve public response to the warnings. These upgrades started in September of 2011 and since day one have been benefiting the public. 6-26-2013 11-03-27 AM

You may ask what is Dual-Polarization? Dual-Pol technology is the most significant enhancement made to the nation’s federal weather radar system since the implementation of Doppler technology in the early 1990s. Dual-pol radar sends and receives both horizontal and vertical pulses. These pulses produce a much more informative picture of the size and shape of the objects in the sky. This provides meteorologist the ability to distinguish between rain, snow, hail and non-weather items like wildfire smoke plumes, birds and even insects. Conventional Doppler radar only has a one-dimensional view making it difficult to distinguish between the different precipitation types. Dual-pol is credited with providing improved detection of heavy rainfall, which can and has increased warning time for flash floods. It can also see airborne debris giving meteorologists the ability to confirm a tornado on the ground, even in the dark of when hidden by heavy rain.

In addition to the NWS Radars, the full nationwide radar network, which includes an additional 37 radar sites owned by the FAA and Defense department, will be completely upgraded to the dual-pol technology during the summer months. What does this mean for MyWARN users? This game-changing technology will and has already helped meteorologists issue more accurate and timely warnings to the public and has saved lives. Since MyWARN gets all its information from these meteorologists at each of the NWS Offices as soon as it is issued, the improved warnings and lead time are ensuring MyWARNers are even better warned, alerted, notified and prepared for severe weather at their exact location. Follow us on Twitter. Like us on Facebook. Add us to your Google+ circles. MyWARN is available in the Google Play Store and as always our very popular iOS version is available for download in the iTunes Store. Get MyWARN now from the iTunes Store and the Google Play Store.

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