Minutes of the High Plains AMS/NWA Chapter Meeting

October 30, 2012

The AMS/NWA High Plains Chapter held a teleconference, in connection with a webinar, on Tuesday, October 30th, at 11:30 AM CDT.  This teleconference was well attended, with 30 members logged on. The business meeting started at 11:30 AM CDT, with President Bill Taylor welcoming everyone.  The reading of the past meeting’s minutes was waved, as an email copy was sent out one week prior to this meeting.  The Treasurer’s report was given by Treasurer Scott Bryant.  Our available balance on 08/13/2012 was $6059.63.  With $45.52 deposits and $252.18 expenses, the available balance as of 10/30/2012 was $5852.97.  Broken down, there was $2130.00 in the Jim Johnson Scholarship Fund, and $3222.97 in our checkbook.  The Weather Box our chapter funded for the Nebraska Teacher Association was a success. The Box is located at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln, and can be checked out by schools.  Pictures of the Weather Box and its content can been seen on our Facebook page, http://www.facebook.com/HighPlainsChapterAMS.NWA .  As for the fate of the next High Plains conference, it is on hold, with little promise of funding being available to hold the conference.

A webinar followed the short meeting.  This webinar was hosted by Mike Moritz and Briona Saltzman, both of Hastings WFO, NE.  Mike and Briona relayed to the telephone audience their experiences during a Phased Array Radar exercise they participated in at Norman, OK this past summer.  This project was known as the Praise Experiment.  Mike and Briona reported each day, as if going to work.  They then went through scenarios on a WES, Weather Event Simulator.  They were to warn on storms, using only the reflectivity and velocity data from the Phased Array Radar, but no environmental data.  One advantage the Phased Array radar has is very rapid volume scans, as quick as 20 to 30 seconds.  Also, the radar can be pointed in one direction and vertically scanned, dwelling on the area of interest.  They spent approximately 2 hours per day actually going through exercises, then 3 to 5 hours assessing and reviewing their daily performance. One “Expert” operator sat across from a “Novice” operator, both seeing the same data.  Every minute of the warning experiment was then closely examined and recorded, including asking at what point they decided to warn, and what data helped them make that decision.  The Phased Array data was nice, but Mike was told by the local engineers that year 2030 was the earliest the Phased Array Radar could expect to hit the field offices.  Mike and Briona were in Norman one week, and then several other Expert/Novice teams rotated through the experiment during the summer.  You can email Mike at Michael.Moritz@noaa.gov, to obtain a copy of this Powerpoint webinar presentation.
The next meeting, virtual, will likely be in early December.  A webinar is in the process of   being scheduled by the WCM from SPC, Greg Carbin. Details will follow soon on this next meeting.

Bill Taylor, President
Tim Burke, Secretary