Time flies when you are having fun – and fun for meteorologists sometimes involves upgrading and tweaking a radar. I spent some time with a technician today to make sure that our Channel 9 exclusive “Live Doppler 9000 Radar” is operating and displaying precipitation data appropriately. Because we haven’t promoted our “Live” radar recently, I suppose there might be some readers out there who are unfamiliar with the technology we possess. The Channel 9 radar is located at the Central Wisconsin Airport in Mosinee. It is the only weather radar operating in central Wisconsin. It is true that our viewing area is covered adequately by NWS radars, but having our own radar in Marathon county really helps fill in the gaps and the fine detail. All of the NWS radars that cover central and northcentral Wisconsin are at least 80 miles away (Green Bay, La Crosse, Duluth, Marquette). This means that their radar beams are shooting many thousand feet in the air by the time they reach Lincoln, Marathon, and Taylor counties. Our radar has often been able to detect mini-supercell thunderstorms (that eventually produced tornadoes) and light precipitation, when the NWS radars have not. It is a little extra coverage we can provide to help keep people safe in Northcentral Wisconsin. The NWS radars are great radars of course, but they are not always located most optimally to provide uniform coverage of a given geographic area. Of course, working on the radar, means I don’t have a lot of time for a blog update.
Have a nice Tuesday! Meteorologist Justin Loew.