NSSL/CIMMS begins transfer of radar clutter removal technique to NWS

The NSSL/CIMMS radar clutter filter is being transferred to the National Weather Service (NWS) for engineering evaluation as a complete ground clutter removal solution for future upgrades of the WSR-88D network. The filter is called Clutter Environment Analysis using Adaptive Processing (CLEAN-AP), and performs real-time automatic detection and suppression of ground clutter in active weather situations.

Radar energy fields bounce off anything in their path, including buildings, tall trees and hills. These obstructions are known as ground clutter, and can contaminate weather signals or obscure them.

The need for automatic quality control of operational radar data to improve analysis, situation awareness, and warning of hazardous weather phenomena has been recognized as a priority by the tri-agency NEXRAD program. Because data quality improvements at the source benefit all downstream products, NSSL/CIMMS transferring of CLEAN-AP and other evolutionary signal processing techniques to the WSR-88D has been a key component of addressing such need.

CLEAN-AP was successfully implemented on the National Weather Radar Testbed Phased Array Radar and on the University of Oklahoma’s OU-PRIME radar before acceptance by the NWS.

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