University of Oklahoma Radar Team developing fastest, most advanced radar in the nation

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NORMAN, Okla. – The University of Oklahoma’s Advanced Radar Research Center is developing the fastest and most advanced radar in the nation with a $3.4 and $3.1 million SENSR grant from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

HORUS, an all-digital, polarimetric phased array radar, “can scan the atmosphere in 30 seconds or less and distinguish between snowflakes, raindrops, hail stones or other targets within a storm.”

The Horus radar is an all-digital, polarimetric, phased array radar that can scan the atmosphere in 30 seconds or less and distinguish between snowflakes, raindrops, hail stones and other targets within a storm. 

School officials say the rapid scans are critical for forecasting and prediction.

“OU has worked with the National Severe Storms Laboratory for over a decade in achieving multiple missions with a single radar, such as weather observations and aircraft surveillance,” said Robert Palmer, ARRC Executive Director. “The challenges we faced during this time can be overcome by combining phased array technology and polarimetry to develop a radar that can scan faster and scrutinize specific characteristics of hydrometeors of all types. Using an all-digital radar architecture is the reason polarimetry and phased arrays can be effectively combined.”

OU is the only university in the nation developing the all-digital, polarimetric phased array radar.

HORUS will be the most advanced radar available to the weather radar community once it is fully developed, school officials say. Further advancements will be possible with the completion of the full-scale system infrastructure, which includes a truck, chiller, array frame and positioner.

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