Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Measuring wind patterns


On hearing the word, “radar”, we usually think of speed controls or air traffic control systems. In fact, there are many kinds of radar and applications thereof.

At Punta Galea in Getxo the Climatology and Meteorology Office of the Basque Government has installed a very special kind of radar: a radar that indicates the patterns of winds; wind patterns at up to 3,000 metres altitude indicating its direction and speed. This is what is special about the radar at Punta Galea.

In normal operation mode, the average wind patterns are obtained every 25 minutes and, moreover, the temperature is measured every 30 minutes. In order to obtain data about winds, the radar sends microwave pulses towards the sky in five directions by means of a multidirectional broadcasting aerial. One of these microwave beams is directed vertically, to the zenith; the other four towards the four cardinal points. Small variations in the atmosphere produce echoes and some of the pulses are reflected back to the radar antenna, where they are detected. The differences in frequency between the waves received and the waves emitted are processed and analysed by the computer and we obtain a representation of the wind pattern with its speed and direction at different altitudes. The interpretation of these results is the job of the researchers and technicians.

Normally wind data is obtained up to 3,000 metres altitude but this altitude varies according to atmospheric conditions. The temperature, on the other hand, measured combining the radar echoes with the emission of acoustic signals, has a lower limit, between 700 and 1,000 metres altitude.

All this data is received both in the Climatology and Meteorology Office and in the Atmosphere Environment Group at the School of Engineering on the Bilbao campus of the University of the Basque Country. Amongst the studies carried out by this research group are those relating to the presence of high-altitude ozone pockets above the Bilbao area, in concentrations that could not be due, in principle, to local emissions. Combining the data obtained from the wind pattern radar device with meteorological models for studying the conditions of ozone movement and direction models, it has been possible to demonstrate the transport of ozone over long distances. Thus, it has been confirmed that, in certain meteorological conditions, the ozone registered over the Basque Country, apart from being produced locally, may come from two other sources: one directly from Britanny and the other from the Ebro river valley, to the south, after passing over the south-west of France and Tarragona respectively, and picking up more ozone precursors.

It should be remembered that ozone is fundamental to life when it is at higher levels of the atmosphere but is dangerous to the health when found at lower levels. This is why it is important to know its patterns of movement and transport.

Eneko Imaz | Basque research
Further information:

More articles from Earth Sciences:

nachricht UCI and NASA document accelerated glacier melting in West Antarctica
26.10.2016 | University of California - Irvine

nachricht Ice shelf vibrations cause unusual waves in Antarctic atmosphere
25.10.2016 | American Geophysical Union

All articles from Earth Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Etching Microstructures with Lasers

Ultrafast lasers have introduced new possibilities in engraving ultrafine structures, and scientists are now also investigating how to use them to etch microstructures into thin glass. There are possible applications in analytics (lab on a chip) and especially in electronics and the consumer sector, where great interest has been shown.

This new method was born of a surprising phenomenon: irradiating glass in a particular way with an ultrafast laser has the effect of making the glass up to a...

Im Focus: Light-driven atomic rotations excite magnetic waves

Terahertz excitation of selected crystal vibrations leads to an effective magnetic field that drives coherent spin motion

Controlling functional properties by light is one of the grand goals in modern condensed matter physics and materials science. A new study now demonstrates how...

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Greater Range and Longer Lifetime

26.10.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VDI presents International Bionic Award of the Schauenburg Foundation

26.10.2016 | Awards Funding

3-D-printed magnets

26.10.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering

More VideoLinks >>>