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Author Topic: Radar Operation Certification  (Read 666 times)

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Offline Caen_Lash

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Radar Operation Certification
« on: January 12, 2018, 11:36:08 PM »
Hey guys, I am a volunteer for the local EOC. And the NWS is coming up to do radar certification classes (Which certifies that we can set emergency alerts of all kinds by operating a radar) I would like some tips, tricks, or even just info on how radar's work and other such info by anyone who also has the ROC.

(Edit: I am not sure if this goes here but it was the most qualified category that I saw.)
« Last Edit: January 12, 2018, 11:38:52 PM by Caen_Lash »

Offline Weather Display

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Re: Radar Operation Certification
« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2018, 12:53:23 AM »
one interesting thing about a weather radar is that the beam is straight (think line of sight)
and so the earth curving away beneath the beam , means the further you are away from the rain radar, the higher the beam is, i.e , it misses more and more of rain near the surface, until it actually will not show low cloud drizzle

also in big cities during the summer months , in the evening, it picks up 'urban cluter'
especially where there is high humidity...its like picking up pollution (particles in the air) when the wind eases in the evening and the humidity goes up

Doplar radar they use to show the wind speed and direction..especially areas of opposing wind directions..eg in a mesocyclone...you can then see the hook signature (this shows on the normal rain radar too), where tornadoes form

Offline W3DRM

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Re: Radar Operation Certification
« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2018, 03:55:14 AM »
Hey guys, I am a volunteer for the local EOC. And the NWS is coming up to do radar certification classes (Which certifies that we can set emergency alerts of all kinds by operating a radar) I would like some tips, tricks, or even just info on how radar's work and other such info by anyone who also has the ROC.

(Edit: I am not sure if this goes here but it was the most qualified category that I saw.)

Wow, no reflection on you but, this scares the daylights out of me! I can't imagine the NWS asking someone who I assume would have little or no experience, training or competency to "set emergency alerts of all kinds" that could very conceivably have a life or death impact on many citizens in the area. Sorry if I am over-reacting but, I spent years in school learning the technical intricacies of radar systems and their operating fundamentals. That included both fixed, mobile (ship and aircraft) systems as well as Doppler systems. Interpreting the display of a radar scope is not an easy task without a lot of background training and in this case, knowledge in how weather systems impact the radar returns. There must be more to this story than you have told us...
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Offline Caen_Lash

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Re: Radar Operation Certification
« Reply #3 on: January 15, 2018, 05:23:36 PM »
Wow, no reflection on you but, this scares the daylights out of me! I can't imagine the NWS asking someone who I assume would have little or no experience, training or competency to "set emergency alerts of all kinds" that could very conceivably have a life or death impact on many citizens in the area. Sorry if I am over-reacting but, I spent years in school learning the technical intricacies of radar systems and their operating fundamentals. That included both fixed, mobile (ship and aircraft) systems as well as Doppler systems. Interpreting the display of a radar scope is not an easy task without a lot of background training and in this case, knowledge in how weather systems impact the radar returns. There must be more to this story than you have told us...
https://www.weather-watch.com/smf/index.php/topic,66092.msg531380.html#msg531380

Actually, it's a youth program for the local EOC. We have to prove we're mature enough to handle the responsibility, and are still under supervision when we work with the radars. Actually, I'm the one storm spotter out of youth that's joined. I have far more advanced knowledge than most of my Earth science teachers and I've been studying meteorology since I could read. In fact, my favorite book was "Golden Compass' Guide To WEATHER.". That, and everyone has to start somewhere. I am not inexperienced with my field, I'm not sure if self practice counts, and I have plenty of competency. More than the guy who accidentally sent Hawaii into a state of panic over the weekend.

Offline Caen_Lash

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Re: Radar Operation Certification
« Reply #4 on: January 15, 2018, 05:28:57 PM »
one interesting thing about a weather radar is that the beam is straight (think line of sight)
and so the earth curving away beneath the beam , means the further you are away from the rain radar, the higher the beam is, i.e , it misses more and more of rain near the surface, until it actually will not show low cloud drizzle

also in big cities during the summer months , in the evening, it picks up 'urban cluter'
especially where there is high humidity...its like picking up pollution (particles in the air) when the wind eases in the evening and the humidity goes up

Doplar radar they use to show the wind speed and direction..especially areas of opposing wind directions..eg in a mesocyclone...you can then see the hook signature (this shows on the normal rain radar too), where tornadoes form

Thank you for the tips. I never thought of a radar signal as a straight line, and that actually explains *why* 3D Radar (Such as we have on a single weather station out of many) is so advanced. And how would this "Urban Clutter" effect the readings? I never thought that the reason weather reports are so inaccurate in Oklahoma *isn't* the quality of our radars, but the degradation of the air around it. (Where I live Golden Moons are very common. A beautiful phenomena caused my very large quantities of pollution effect the color the moon appears as.) And I know all about hooks, I find them extremely fun to find on any radar image that may have one.

Offline Weather Display

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Re: Radar Operation Certification
« Reply #5 on: January 15, 2018, 05:57:02 PM »
great to see someone young with a lot of enthusiasm
reminds me of myself at your age
keep up the good work!

that urban clutter shows up better in the warmer months (may/june)

I have went tornado chasing over a couple of storm seasons in your state a few years ago now :)

Offline W3DRM

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Re: Radar Operation Certification
« Reply #6 on: January 15, 2018, 06:45:10 PM »
https://www.weather-watch.com/smf/index.php/topic,66092.msg531380.html#msg531380

Actually, it's a youth program for the local EOC. We have to prove we're mature enough to handle the responsibility, and are still under supervision when we work with the radars. Actually, I'm the one storm spotter out of youth that's joined. I have far more advanced knowledge than most of my Earth science teachers and I've been studying meteorology since I could read. In fact, my favorite book was "Golden Compass' Guide To WEATHER.". That, and everyone has to start somewhere. I am not inexperienced with my field, I'm not sure if self practice counts, and I have plenty of competency. More than the guy who accidentally sent Hawaii into a state of panic over the weekend.

Thanks for the explanation of the program. That makes a lot more sense now. Good luck with the program and congratulations on pursuing your volunteerism. One can never be too young to volunteer and help others.
Don - W3DRM - Minden, Nevada --- Davis Wireless VP2, WD 10.37s80, Win10 Pro
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Offline looney2ns

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Re: Radar Operation Certification
« Reply #7 on: February 05, 2018, 06:02:35 PM »
Hey guys, I am a volunteer for the local EOC. And the NWS is coming up to do radar certification classes (Which certifies that we can set emergency alerts of all kinds by operating a radar) I would like some tips, tricks, or even just info on how radar's work and other such info by anyone who also has the ROC.

(Edit: I am not sure if this goes here but it was the most qualified category that I saw.)

The NWS explains: https://forecast.weather.gov/jetstream/doppler/how.htm

Also, ask the NWS about you taking a tour of their local office. You get to see the radar up close and personal.
« Last Edit: February 05, 2018, 06:05:17 PM by looney2ns »

Offline Dale Reid

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Re: Radar Operation Certification
« Reply #8 on: February 05, 2018, 07:22:43 PM »
Gosh, radar, a subject dear to my heart.  As a kid in the late 50s and 60s our Public Radio Station which was one of several scattered around the state of Wisconsin (state owned and a so called state station, so no advertising, and a lot of long cuts of classical music and books read by professional readers) had a noon weather round up.  They always finished hearing from the various transmitter site engineers by going to the National Weather Bureau at Truax Field, in Madison, WI.   The old guy there was very good, and frequently would say (as we longed for rain for the crops and to get a break from field work) that a storm was located, according to radar, at such and such place.

The mystery of that was immense.  And when I got older my dreams of having a tower and my very own radar were also growing.  When I learned to fly I found that even some 'smaller' twin engine airplanes like Cessna 310s and Piper Aztecs) had weather radar on board.  A few years ago a guy gave me an old monocolor, non-doppler, radar from an upgrade he did to a plane he used for commercial use (and couldn't see the older technology), which is still sitting in my shed, not fired up yet.

I have complete respect for the power of the beam these things radiate and that along with trees that would require me to put up quite a tower to get over, has kept me from illicitly firing it up just to see what an approaching storm would look like. 

Ah, radar.  The nostalgia of what I dreamed about as a kid and to see what the latest Doppler and the immense power of digital processing of the signal to get rid of ground clutter and show things inside clouds a hundred miles away is still a strong feeling.

Thanks for triggering the discussion.
Dale

 

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