Author Topic: Watching the Realtime map in real time  (Read 524 times)

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Offline DaleReid

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Watching the Realtime map in real time
« on: May 19, 2014, 10:33:00 PM »
I left a message on the BO board, since I don't think the developers read here.

Today I was at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.  For those who've never been there, it is pretty darned flat, with gently rolling hills, and the unique situation of the ONLY tall buildings being clinic related, AND the countryside being only a few miles away from the Clinic to the west.

I was in a large conference room with an expanse of glass looking to the west,  and an isolated cell moved in from the NW.  The ceilings were high enough to allow for good viewing, and being on the 19th floor, nothing was between me and the storm, not even much humidity or visibility reducing dust.  I was able to have my laptop running, and zoomed in quite close to watch the strike plots.  A road runs straight west from this building and as the storm came in, two cloud to ground strikes occurred, within a fraction of a second of each other. One was distinctly south of the road, and the next close to the first, but clearing hitting the ground a few blocks north of the road.  The plots appeared in the same order as the strikes, and the locations were in approximately the position I could guess to be as observed from the building using small lakes and roads as distance markers.

This was so neat to watch, and while I was the only one with a computer watching plots, the storm moving in was spectacular enough that others in the meeting said they were a  bit distracted by the show going on outside.

I wish there had been more ground strikes and that the rain that began to fall hadn't hidden the ground locations where the strikes occurred.  But a rare opportunity to watch a storm, and even more so to see just how good the plotting was being done as the area stations (including my own back in Eau Claire) was feeding servers data to calculate the strokes and plot them.  Very cool, indeed.

Offline JonathanW

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Re: Watching the Realtime map in real time
« Reply #1 on: May 20, 2014, 03:26:07 AM »
That sounds amazing :)

I know it's been said quite a few times that a lot of the strikes in the U.S. are missed due to the sparseness of the stations.  Yesterday, I was watching the realtime map in Europe, and zoomed in to a line of storms in Finland.  Compared with the realtime map for most of the U.S. (where new strikes may come in, on average, every 5-10 seconds or so), the rapid rate at which new strikes were being depicted was really amazing.  Multiple strikes per second, and every strike must have had 40-50 stations or more picking it up.  And that's still mostly green stations doing the job :)

I'm very much looking forward to heavier coverage here in the U.S.