WDS News

2017 AMS Summer Community Meeting
Madison, Wisconsin, August 2-3, 2017

Maximizing the Value Chain across the Weather, Water, & Climate Enterprise

Rick Smeltzer, President, Weather Detection Systems, was invited to participate in the 2017 AMS Summer Community Meeting. He was part of a panel addressing “Filling the Gaps in Radar Coverage”. The panel discussed WSR-88D national radar gap impacts, requirements in the US Weather Research and Forecast Improvement law to address the issue, and options for improving radar coverage. Mr. Smeltzer addressed the Private Sector Solution.

Currently, roughly two-million square miles have no 88D radar surveillance within the U.S. Mr. Smeltzer identified some of the gaps in coverage and mentioned that this would be a great opportunity for the private sector and government agencies to work together.

Mr. Smeltzer’s Private Sector Solutions included strategically placing “S-Band” phased-array solid-state gap-filling radar systems (mini 88Ds) to fill these gaps. Since all the 88Ds are S-band, S-Band gap filling radar would have less impact on the existing band-width structure and the data output would be in the same format as the 88Ds for easy integration eliminating the need for algorithms to correct for wave length deficiencies in other bands-widths. He also suggested leveraging the private sectors existing infrastructure for economic efficiencies. Weather Detection Systems high-power, solid-state, S-Band radar systems offer performance levels comparable to the 88Ds.

Other panel members included: Session Lead, Don Berchoff (TempoQuest, Inc.); Brenda Phillips (University of Massachusetts); Kurt Hondl, (NOAA/National Severe Storms Lab); and Joe Pica (NOAA/NWS).

WDS Installs Solid-State S-Band Radar System at WREG-Television, Memphis, TN
July 2017

Weather Detection Systems upgraded WREG-Television’s radar to a WDS Orion. The new Orion S-band is a high-power, solid-state, GaN-based radar system. Dubbed “Storm Tracker 3S” its performance levels are comparable to the NWS 88Ds which are also S-Band systems. Research-grade accuracy and data integrity make it superior to any other radar currently being used in the broadcast market space. One of the WREG meteorologists explained it as a system that until now was only available to the military and the NWS.