Field Notes for SMN Radars

SMN Radars NAME2004, Mexico
Jul/Aug 2004

These field notes were compiled from e-mails of Jon Lutz, and small notes attached to the removable storage drives.


Fixed elevation scanning at Cabo San Lucas

From Jon Lutz, 7-May-2004, to T. Lang via email:


Just some quick news from the Cabo radar. The good news is that we
will have a wireless internet connection to the radar. It turns out
that the radar site is used for a wireless repeater location.

The radar is mostly functional except that there is no elevation
control. The slip rings need repair (13k$) and it is not known when
this cost will be approved,or the task accomplished. The other part is
that the EEC software was "upgraded" and the radar will no longer do
volume scans. Possibly the older software version can be re-installed.

There will be no problem installing the HIQ processor at Cabo, but for
now it is dependent on the EEC antenna control.

Hopefully all this confusion can be resolved, however situations like
this are typical.

Palmito and Gusave use the old software so we are Ok there. Palmito
still is not operational. I have ordered a satellite receiver for
internet access at Gusave. Discussions with RAP for the TITAN
installations are ongoing.

   I'll be back in Boulder next week.


Clock error at Guasave, 10-Jun to 2-Jul

From Jon Lutz, 9-Jul-2004, to R. Rilling via email:

     The time error for the Guasave data  up to 7/2/04
is as follows:

Time on the computer  13:06:01

Actual time           21:08:00  GMT

       This means add 8 hrs 1 min and 59 sec to get
the GMT time.

After 7/2/04 times will be correct so this problem
should only happenthis one time.


Max range increased at Guasave, 2-Jul

From Jon Lutz, 9-Jul-2004, to R. Rilling via personal communication:

The maximum range was increased at Guasave on 2-Jul.  Gates were
added, with gate size kept the same.  This is reflected in a change in
size of the hourly data sets.

SMN Radar Coordinates

From Jon Lutz, 24-Jul-2004, to R. Rilling via email:


Here they are:

    Obregon:  N 27 28.909
              W 109 56.741
              Alt  81m

     Guasave:  N 25 34.055
               W 108 27.80
               Alt  60m

     Cabo San Lucas  N  22 52.872
                     W 109 55.605
                     Alt  271m

      El Palmito     N 25 45.336
                     W 104  54.274
                     Alt 2209 m

The altitudes are for the base of the tower. I guess
add about 10 m except for Guasave which would add 25
GPS altitudes are only good to 20 m anyway I think.


Guasave calibration offset

[Note: this information applies to Guasave data for dates 12-Jul to 29/30-Jul.]

From Jon Lutz, 24-Jul-2004, to R. Rilling via email:

     [Blank] is returning tomorrow with two Kangurus,
from Guasave and Cabo. The Guasave data has a bad
offset because I was fooled when I first arrived there
with the test equipment. The DBZ of the noise at 120
km should be about 0 DBZ. Also the noise power in the
data should be about minus 110. Both the transmit
power and the receiver gain were off quite a bit on
this 2nd disk. The first disk was closer. The disk
being recorded now is OK. The CABO data doesnt need
any corrections at this time.



Velocity reversal possible at SMN radars?

From Jon Lutz, 13-Aug-2004, to R. Rilling via email:

    There is mounting evidence that the velocities on
the SMN radars are backwards. Would it be possible for
someone to give an opinion using the raw data files?
All we have here are the Titan images. Its complicated
by different elevation angles and folding.

    Also it appears that the reflectivities for
Guasave are off a lot. We compared the same storm
midway between the two radars. Again this was only on
the Titan images. 

Jean made copies of some recent data. Arturo flew to
Cabo to get the next Kanguru from there which he will
give to Jean.

Any news?


Lost Data at Guasave -- Met Staff Shut-Down

From R. Rilling to David Ahijevych, email of 10-Dec-04:


The missing Guasave SMN radar data has been recovered in its entirety.
It will be transferred to the Mass-Store this weekend.

Please note that the data record *is* compromised: the Met Staff at
the radar turned the recording off on 22-Jul, and it was not turned on
again until Jon Lutz arrived on 29-Jul.

Bob Rilling

--- Bob Rilling --- / NCAR Earth Observing Laboratory
Created: Wed Oct 6 15:49:52 MDT 2004
Last modified: