Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Special Report: The Height of Technology - Sunday

There are a number of sensors on board and a mini computer chip for navigation
I've been working on a special report that will air this Sunday on KWCH 12 at 10 p.m. I recently traveled to Norman, OK to the National Weather Center to interview a professor who wants to utilize unmanned airplanes to sample atmospheric conditions. They have already had some test flights and collected data, but there are so many restrictions by the FAA because of the potential danger to air traffic. You might find it hard to believe, but the lowest mile of the atmosphere is one of the hardest to measure. There are an enormous number of obstacles we have to work around and the contamination of the atmosphere from human activity can skew the data. So researchers are trying to think outside of the box to find new ways to study what's above us AND the environment around thunderstorms. Nearly all researchers will tell you that the more we learn together as a scientific community about tornadoes, the better our forecasts will be. We can only expect tornado forecasts to improve down the road. Watch the rest of my special report Sunday at 10 p.m. on KWCH12.
Controller for the unmanned aircraft
The aircraft is made of a high impact type Styrofoam - making it very lightweight  

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