The National Weather Center houses a unique confederation of University of Oklahoma, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and state organizations that work together in partnership to improve understanding of events occurring in Earth’s atmosphere over a wide range of time and space.
Research at the National Weather Center
Researchers are working on a wide variety of projects throughout the National Weather Center. Topics include radar meteorology, mesoscale meteorology, cloud physics and lightning, synoptic meteorology, and climate variability and change.
NSF-Supported Research at the University of Oklahoma Uses Supercomputers and Simulations to Improve Storm Forecasts
When a hail storm moved through Fort Worth, Texas on May 5, 1995, it battered the highly populated area with hail up to 4 inches in diameter and struck a local outdoor festival known as the Fort Worth Mayfest.
The Mayfest storm was one of the costliest hailstorms in U.S history, causing more than $2 billion in damage and injuring at least 100 people.
Scientists know that storms with a rotating updraft on their southwestern sides -- which are particularly common in the spring on the U.S. southern plains -- are associated with the biggest, most severe tornadoes and also produce a lot of large hail. However, clear ideas on how they form and how to predict these events in advance have proven elusive.
A team based at University of Oklahoma (OU) working on the Severe Hail Analysis, Representation and Prediction (SHARP) project works to solve that mystery, with support from the National Science Foundation (NSF).
Researchers Show Impact Eclipse Had in Oklahoma
Those witnessing the solar eclipse on Monday may have noticed a drop in temperature while outside. But just how much did the temperature change in Oklahoma, where most of the state experienced about 85 percent of the eclipse.
Researchers with The University of Oklahoma Cooperative Institute for Mesoscale Meteorological Studies and the ARM Climate Research Facility Data Quality Office wanted to find out.
Dr. Jonathan J. Gourley and Dr. Yang Hong (NOAA NSSL) co-authored “Radar Hydrology,” which focuses on the use of radars in hydrology. Weather radars have proven their value for remote sensing of precipitation, even at high enough resolution to monitor and predict the onset of flash floods. But the process to arrive at an accurate estimate of precipitation from the raw radar signal is not a straightforward one. For this reason, this book is dedicated to radar-based precipitation estimation alone. Read more (PDF).
The Multi-function Phased Array Radar (MPAR)
This program, first demonstrated by the NOAA, NSSL stands to deliver the most flexible long-range weather radar in history, featuring adaptive scanning as well as temporal resolutions more than ten times better than the WSR-88D. Several
technology demonstrators have been or are currently in development that seek to mitigate risks associated with the adoption of active phased array technology for weather radar applications. With the advent of low-cost, highly-integrated digital transceivers within the last decade, the technology landscape is on the cusp..... Read more (PDF).
Radar Innovations Lab
In 2015, the University of Oklahoma opened the Radar Innovations Laboratory on OU's Research Campus. The 35,000-square-foot facility encourages creative thinking and collaboration among faculty, students, and external partners with a goal of innovating next-generation radar, microwave electronics, and related technologies.