Radar and Maps
Radar and specific maps relating to severe weather. Information about NEXRAD radar, coverage area, etc.
Please note that the NWS NEXRAD weather surveillance radar network is primarily designed to detect and warn the US public of Severe Storms (storms that have the potential for loss of life or property) including thunderstorms, tornadoes, high winds, rain, hail, sleet, snow, high winds, etc. The area of focus for this weather surveillance radar system is for precipitation and storms below 10,000 feet elevation, which is of the greatest concern when it comes to alerting the public of dangerous weather. Because the radar beam is angled slightly upward, the scanned area becomes higher in the atmosphere, the further from the radar site. According to NOAA/NWS, the effective range for this coverage is limited to approximately 140 miles.
Near Alpine, the part of the atmosphere they could possibly scan from Midland (using other weather radar products) is approximately 12,000 feet (and above) of elevation and near Terlingua, the lowest part of the scan would be approximately 25,000 feet, extending to possibly 35,000 feet. Although there are radar products that can detect heavy precipitation at those distances (from the radar site) and at those altitudes, it is not indicative of what might be occurring at the surface. We could be experiencing an extremely severe storm that is completely below 15,000, which would not be seen on any kind of radar product from the Midland site. Also, the opposite could be true, there can be a storm towering high into the upper atmosphere with a lot of storm energy, while experiencing calm weather near the surface. Because with the current technology, it can not be determined with any degree of reliability, what is occurring at the surface based on radar observations of the upper atmosphere.
About our data - Our data is acquired from our own sensors and some from those affiliates which we share our data, including CWOP, MesoWest, APRS, NWS, , Mid-South Regional Network and Weather Underground.
Our lightning data is displayed in near real-time on our web site. At 5 minute intervals, it is uploaded to the StrikeStar network where it is displayed on a map along with other lightning detection sites around the US. The data is then uploaded to Weather Underground where it is made available on their website, typically within 15 minutes.. Additionally, our data is also used and displayed by Hamweather and Weather for You.