WeatherBug Confirms Position as Operator of the Fastest, Most Complete Lightning Network
WeatherBug®, the leading provider of consumer and professional weather products and services and operator of the largest weather observing and lightning network, today confirmed its position as the provider of the fastest, most comprehensive lightning detection information. Deployed throughout North America, Mexico, the Caribbean, Australia, and numerous other areas and countries, the WeatherBug Total Lightning Network™ (WTLN) utilizes a cost-effective approach that includes a dense network of professional-grade wideband lightning sensors, state-of-the-art communications technology and powerful processing algorithms to provide the only integrated in-cloud (IC) and cloud-to-ground (CG) lightning detection capabilities available at the fastest speeds – under 10 seconds of latency – possible.
Other lightning detection networks rely on outdated satellite-based technology developed more than a generation ago and designed to detect only cloud-to-ground lightning strokes. These systems detect a very small fraction of in-cloud lightning, which is critical for advanced forecasting, or nowcasting, of severe weather phenomena such as tornadoes, damaging downburst winds, wind shear, and deadly cloud-to-ground lightning strikes that often follow five to 30 minutes after in-cloud activity begins. In contrast, the WeatherBug Total Lightning Network detects and processes significantly greater amounts of data, including both in-cloud and cloud-to-ground activity. The network also eliminates dependency on legacy satellite technologies and leverages advanced terrestrial network connectivity to achieve greater bandwidth delivery from sensors. This enables next-generation predictive capabilities that are not available from other lightning network data, but which are crucial for characterizing severe storm precursors, improving severe storm warning lead times and comprehensive weather management planning.
“As a lightning researcher, I acquire high-speed video, microwave, electric-field and optical data for lightning that occurs within range of our observing station in central Oklahoma,” Dr. William H. Beasley, Professor, School of Meteorology, University of Oklahoma and consultant on lightning for the WTLN. “During a recent severe storm, lightning flashes detected by WTLN appeared on the StreamerRT display screen almost instantaneously -- often before the associated thunder reached my location. The application and speed with which lightning locations are provided by the WeatherBug Total Lightning Network is truly impressive.”
“Based on our research and statements issued by other providers, the WeatherBug Total Lightning Network typically sees a great deal more lightning activity and locates it with a far greater degree of accuracy,” said Dr. Charlie Liu, Chief Architect, WeatherBug. “We have worked to develop the fastest, most accurate total lightning network, and we are pleased to announce that our customers experience the shortest latency in the industry. This translates into more accurate and timely severe weather forecasting, which helps save lives.”
In fact, during a recent lightning event on July 8, 2010 that caused a house fire in Lebanon, Ind., the WeatherBug Total Lightning Network detected 5,141 strokes, including over 4,400 in-cloud pulses. The location accuracy of the stroke that caused the house fire was 208 meters, demonstrating the high degree of precision typical of the overall performance of the WeatherBug Total Lightning Network. The ability of the WeatherBug Total Lightning Network to detect in-cloud lightning also proved invaluable, as early identification and notification of severe activity resulted.
Introduced in 2009, the WeatherBug Total Lightning Network delivers decision support information to numerous industry verticals including energy, aviation, government, agriculture and recreation. The solution has been selected by the U.S. Army RDT&E Meteorology Program and international emergency response organizations for the provision of advanced lightning and severe storm detection.
WeatherBug (http://www.weatherbug.com and http://www.weatherbugprofessional.com) precisely monitors, organizes and disseminates global weather information. As a trusted source for live, local dynamic data, WeatherBug empowers society with weather intelligence for making more informed decisions. Millions of consumers and professional organizations, including the National Weather Service, rely on WeatherBug to plan daily activities, safeguard lives and improve business operations. WeatherBug is a brand of AWS Convergence Technologies, Inc. (http://www.aws.com)