Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Using Radar to Estimate Precipitation

Did you know that we can estimate precipitation totals without a rain gauge?  Meteorologists have the ability to analyze radar data and estimate the accumulated precipitation totals.

The following map shows the radar estimated precipitation for the Nebraska Region.
Time period:  12Z (7am CDST) May 18, 2013 to 12Z (7am CDST) May 19, 2013.
 

Nebraska is in the center of the map with portions of the surrounding states. Look carefully to see the state outline and county outlines. Right to left: LNK is Lincoln, BBW Broken Bow,
LBF is North Platte, & CYS is Cheyenne, WY.



The following map shows the radar estimated precipitation for the Conterminous U.S. 
Time period:  12Z (7am CDST) May 18, 2013 to 12Z (7am CDST) May 19, 2013. 

The following map shows the radar estimated precipitation for the Nebraska Region.
Time period:  12Z (7am CDST) May 19, 2013 to 12Z (7am CDST) May 20, 2013.
  

  The following map shows the radar estimated precipitation for the Conterminous U.S.
Time period:  12Z (7am CDST) May 19, 2013 to 12Z (7am CDST) May 20, 2013.
 

Although the most accurate precipitation measurement procedure is to use rain gauges, this process of estimating the rainfall using radar data is quite useful, especially for areas without a dense observational network of rain gauges.

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