Wonder Wednesday: History of Radar/Satellite

Weather
Radar jamming. Photo courtesy of wikimedia.

The use of radar technology only dates back to World War II, was mostly used in the war departments. Radar, which stands for radio detection and ranging, was a tool to help use weather events in favor of troops. After WWII ended in 1945, many of the radar systems were declassified, and the Weather Bureau was able to acquire 25 ex-navy systems to help measure and detect movement of storms. Even though many storm predictions occured through the 1920s, the next generation of radar and satellite emerged in the 1950s.

The Weather Bureau dealt with a lot of bad publicity for not putting out warnings of on-coming severe storm threats. The program system used to input information and output data, was only working with larger scaled storm echoes, but still had a human error for interpretation. In the late 1970s, radars became digitally processed, which gave an output of information with higher-quality images. By 1982, many Americans, who had cable TV, were able to get information relayed on a radar directly from the Weather Channel.

Viewing a doppler radar image of reflectivity. Image courtesy of Flickr.

The use of polar-metric radars (dual-pol) helped the use of radar in the 2010s. The main help with this next generation radar was determining how much rainfall or snowfall could be expected with each system, as well as locating masses of bugs and birds traveling in groups. As of now, we collect information from a multi-function phased array radar, or MPAR. The biggest change of this system is how much faster information and data can be collected and relayed to the public. The current systems of MPAR is expected to stick around for a while, however, work is being done to help improve this radar type, and an upgrade is projected to come to us in the 2030s.

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Standard Conservation

San Angelo is in standard conservation, which restricts outside watering to twice every seven days at no more than 1 inch per week, no watering between noon and 6 pm. Runoff of more than 150 feet down any street, gutter, alley or ditch is prohibited.

Report watering violations by clicking on https://www.cosatx.us/departments-services/water-conservation/report-a-water-violation or calling 325-657-4409. Do your part; be water smart!