NSSL and the University of Oklahoma have teamed up to build a mobile X-band dual-polarimetric radar, dubbed the NO-XP. The NO-XP is now operational and data has been collected on several events during the past few months. NSSL and OU plan to use the NO-XP this spring as much as possible to identify any technical and operational issues.
Mobile radars can be placed in position as a storm is developing rather than waiting for storms to occur within the range of stationary radar systems. The dual-polarization capability on the NO-XP will provide additional details on the microphysics of storms, improving forecasts of precipitation amounts and numerical weather prediction of convective storm events. Researchers will also compare NO-XP polarimetric data with the data from WSR-88D.
Background: NSSL has been a leader and major contributor to the scientific and engineering development of polarimetric weather radar for the past 20 years. Radars with dual polarization capabilities (radio waves that are sent out both horizontally and vertically) are more accurate, and can more accurately determine precipitation types and amounts.
Significance: Research data provided by the NO-XP will help improve the quality and accuracy of forecasts and warnings of hazardous weather.
More information: http://www.nssl.noaa.gov/smartradars