Early Warning System Demonstration Project

Guinea, Africa

         Weather and Total Lightning sensors deployed in Guinea enabling PulseRad (proxy radar), Dangerous Thunderstorm Alerts  (DTAs), and real-time observations used in ENcast for nowcasting.

Extreme weather is impacting lives and livelihoods around the world. And, with limited infrastructure -- combined with the increased frequency of severe weather -- least developed countries (LDCs) are the most vulnerable to the impacts of these events.

Earth Networks entered into a public-private partnership with the National Directorate of Meteorology of Guinea (DNM) to demonstrate its advanced forecasting and severe weather warnings in Guinea.

This Early Warning System (EWS), implemented in just weeks, is enabling real-time weather observations and forecasts, Dangerous Thunderstorm Alerts (DTA) and radar-like visibility to precipitation, which can then be used to assess the possibility of floods and drought.

The EWS is an integrated large-scale system providing real-time resolution and maximum reliability to help Guinea officials observe,inform and alert the public and other government agencies to impending weather:

Observe 

  • Twelve (12) lightning sensors and weather stations, interconnected via the internet; implementation on Cellcom Guinee mobile telecom towers
  • Report real-time quality controlled surface observations as well as dangerous cloud-to-ground (CG) and in-cloud (IC) lightning that remains in the sky above extreme conditions
  • Total lightning detected form a single compact sensor recording and transmitting flash wave forms
  • Real-time data transmission
  • Existing infrastructure was maximized to include sensor installation on mobile towers in partnership with Cellcom Guinee
  • Network design and installation was completed within a 4 week period

Inform and Alert

  • Total lightning data is utilized to create PulseRad and Dangerous Thunderstorm Alerts
  • PulseRad, a proxy radar visualization tool provides radar-like visibility to highlight areas threatened by heavy rain,high winds, flash floods (accumulated rainfalls), as well as continual drought and flood potential monitoring
  • Dangerous Thunderstorm Alerts provide early warnings of severe weather
  • ENcast ensemble forecasting tool utilizes current weather and lightning data to localize and enhance localized hourly forecasts

 

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Project Impact

"Within a few weeks, it has become possible to actively track thunderstorms, monitor precipitation and issue alerts to severe weather across the country by utilizing innovative technology and the country’s existing cell tower infrastructure. 

Deployment and initial maintenance of traditional radar in a country like Guinea would require upwards of 10 million U.S. dollars which makes the new technology from Earth Networks a viable and exciting alternative for developing countries.”                  

Dr. Mamadou Lamine Bah