Doppler Radar WSR88

Essay by tolgar1357University, Bachelor'sA+, March 2006

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Doppler Radar is used by scientists to monitor the weather around the country. There are 160 radar sites that make it possible to warn people about upcoming sever weather systems. Currently Doppler Radar can provide an eleven minute warning for an upcoming tornado. This technology is a tool that can be used to save thousands of lives when faced up against sever weather storms.

NEXRAD (next generation radar) established the WSR-88D (Weather Surveillance Radar 88 Doppler) Radar Operations Center in Norman Oklahoma in 1988 (Gramza). The Center employs people from several fields, including the National Weather Service, Air Force, Navy, and support contractors.

The Radar is made out of a large fiberglass dome that houses the antenna and protects it from the elements. The data that is received by the antenna is sent to a receiver that is at the base of the tower. The information is then sent to radar project generator, which "translates" the information, and sends it to the processor, which acquires the data that the National Weather Center requests (Sullivan).

Through this system, people all over the country can have access to weather information at any time of the day.

Doppler Radar is a very powerful tool in helping us predict what the weather will be like and if any preventable measures can be taken to help lessen the tragedies of severe storms. Although this technology is very helpful to us many scientists think that the Doppler Radar needs to be advanced. Military radars use electronic antennas called phased arrays, instead of the mechanical dishes used by Doppler. These phased arrays are able to perform scans at a fraction of the time it takes a mechanical dish to scan. This allows meteorologists the ability to quickly look at various phenomena, which in turn increases the...