Calibration of Local Area Weather Radar-Identifying significant factors affecting the calibration

Publication: Research - peer-reviewJournal article – Annual report year: 2010

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A Local Area Weather Radar (LAWR) is an X-band weather radar developed to meet the needs of high resolution rainfall data for hydrological applications. The LAWR system and data processing methods are reviewed in the first part of this paper, while the second part of the paper focuses on calibration. The data processing for handling the partial beam filling issue was found to be essential to the calibration. LAWR uses a different calibration process compared to conventional weather radars, which use a power-law relationship between reflectivity and rainfall rate. Instead LAWR uses a linear relationship of reflectivity and rainfall rate as result of the log transformation carried out by the logarithmic receiver as opposed to the linear receiver of conventional weather radars. Based on rain gauge data for a five month period from a dense network of nine gauges within a 500 x 500 m area and data from a nearby LAWR, the existing calibration method was tested and two new methods were developed. The three calibration methods were verified with three external gauges placed in different locations. It can be concluded that the LAWR calibration uncertainties can be reduced by 50% in two out of three cases when the calibration is based on a factorized 3 parameter linear model instead of a single parameter linear model.
Original languageEnglish
JournalAtmospheric Research
Issue number1-2
Pages (from-to)129-143
StatePublished - 2010
CitationsWeb of Science® Times Cited: 18


  • Z-R relationship, Uncertainties, Weather radar, Rainfall, Local Area Weather Radar, Calibration, Precipitation, Spatial variability
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