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Baron Services Installs First NEXRAD Upgrade For NWS

Dual-Polarization Weather Radar Is A Prototype Test Bed

In our never-ending search for the answer to the question "What's the weather?", Baron Services, in partnership with L-3 Enterprise IT Solutions (EITS), says the EITS/Baron Services team has installed the first of the National Weather Services' 171 NEXRAD upgrades in Norman, OK. A culmination of the team's 12-month design phase and the successful completion of the Critical Design Review last October, this prototype will serve as a test bed for rigorous hardware and software trials until May 2010.

"Not only will this installation demonstrate successful proof of design, but also, it is a prime example of the strategic partnerships Baron Services has created with the National Weather Service and our teammate L-3 Enterprise IT Solutions," said Bob Baron, President and CEO of Baron Services. "Though the installation is a huge accomplishment, we understand the greater magnitude of this project, and the team is focused on meeting our customer's requirements."

The EITS/Baron team was awarded the five-year NEXRAD contract in October 2007, and is providing design, development, and production of a comprehensive, system-wide upgrade of the 171 NWS, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and Department of Defense (DOD) NEXRAD radars to dual-polarization. Awarded based on the best technological solution and overall value, the contract's implementation will vastly improve forecasting for critical weather events, such as flash floods, in the future.

File Photo

Unlike conventional systems that transmit only a horizontal scan, dual-polarization radars emit both vertically and horizontally polarized beams. Through use of hydrometeor classification for identifying locations and types of precipitation, dual-polarization radars deliver larger amounts of more accurate information concerning the size, shape, orientation, and state of hydrological data. This information provides forecasting professionals the ability to identify precipitation events more precisely than was possible in the past.



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