Author Topic: Unusual NexStorm Display during Storms  (Read 1711 times)

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Offline Redshift48

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    • Redshift Observatory
Unusual NexStorm Display during Storms
« on: August 04, 2018, 05:38:25 PM »
I own the Boltek LD-350 and use NexStorm software to view and to upload to my website.  As far as I can tell, all seems to work well but I have noticed during active storm times something weird with my NexStorm display.  I have asked the software developer as well as Boltek support but did not get a satisfactory answer.  I won't try to describe it in detail but will attach a screenshot of the NexStorm display.  The part I am concerned about is the regular pattern that the older strikes form (parallel lines around the center) - most noticeable to the southeast of center on the attached screenshot.  Boltek said this was probably normal but did not explain what it was.  Has anyone else seen this kind of patterns on their displays during storms?  Also, I wonder if I am getting too many +CG (red stars on my display). 
« Last Edit: August 04, 2018, 05:41:02 PM by Redshift48 »
Vantage Pro 2 with Solar Radiation Module
Boltek LD-350 and NexStorm
Wunderground Station ID KNMMAYHI6
Madis ID E0601

Offline DaleReid

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    • Weather at Eau Claire, WI
Re: Unusual NexStorm Display during Storms
« Reply #1 on: August 05, 2018, 09:55:44 AM »
Could it be multipath of some sort?

I had fiddled with Boltek for years.  At first the software was pretty good.  Not too accurate, but with no time of arrival choices around, it was still fun.  If a storm got within 40 miles all bets were off despite nice animations on other people's web sites.

I got the Lightning and Nexstorm stuff, and spent one summer doing 'calibrations' on the Lightning 2000, which the author said would perhaps take many storm passages to tweak.  With each version released the display became even more abstract.  Used it mainly for number of strikes and some idea of where the storms were.

I had enormous problems with ghosting, and with various gain settings could reduce it, but then couldn't detect storms very far away (100 miles or so).

I had several visits from and with friends who live and breath radio, ham stuff, commercial broadcast licenses and such.  Despite looking things over and checking as much as we could I had to accept my Boltek installation was at most unreliable, if not a distraction from the rest of the hobby.  I sold the two boards I had and one of the recipients has a wonderful presence on his web site, and he's only a hundred miles away, so I doubt it is geography but installation. 

I have no proof and almost no way to determine if this was true, but the consensus from all the radio guys was some sort of multipath or re-radiation of strong local (less than 40 miles away) from metal in my buildings, a TV tower, or just plain old bad physical location. 

Or gremlins. 

Good luck, I love the idea behind the device and the work that the Boltek company put into developing this and keeping it on the market.