Radar Design for Determining the Strength of Tropical Cyclones in the Bay of Bengal : MARC Report Number 6

United Nations Environment Programme (1977)

An especially severe and recurring natural disaster is the tropical cyclone particularly as affecting the land surrounding the Bay of Bengal and the Arabian Sea. A particularly well documented case there was the cyclone of 1970, when an estimated 300000 people died. Although it is possible to predict the occurrence of a cyclone from satellite pictures, it is almost impossible to make a precise estimate of its severity. The decision whether or not to warn the public of approach- ing danger is thus a very difficult one to make. Repeated death and destruction can best be minimized if killer storms can be distin- guished from non-killer storms and thus assure public acceptance of warning systems. Aircraft reconnaissance into the storm centres is one way, but the cost of maintaining an aircraft alert system is prohibitively high. Modern Doppler radar equipped with a real- time processor and colour display appears to offer a less costly alternative. The ensuing report develops a specification for such a cyclone detecting radar from a new radar technology proven in use at the National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, Colorado, USA.

Reports and Books