All original images (C) Steve Douglass unless otherwise noted.

All original images (C) Steve Douglass unless otherwise noted. Permission required for commercial use or publishing.

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Monday, March 2, 2009

Lubbock Severe Weather Meet: Part 1

I was kidnapped recently and dragged down to Lubbock by my sister Shelley and her newly acquired husband, Dale Stanton.
Even though the purpose of the kidnapping was to get me out of my dreary apartment and out of town ( I have the tendency to mope when it isn't storm season) I balked when I found out their plan was to spend the day in our sister city to the south.

The song "Happiness is Lubbock Texas in my rear view mirror" kept sounding in my head as they drove south with me hog-tied in the trunk so I couldn't escape (Just kidding Lubbockians) and open the door and bolt for it.

However, once we arrived in TT land I suddenly became docile enough (to unleash) and actually began to have fun.

We started by visiting the Windmill Museum, which was fun - then we went to my favorite place to eat - Fudruckers - where I enjoyed a wonderful Chipoltle Barbeque 1/2 pound burger. It was wonderful.

Then we went to the Lubbock Science Spectrum - and much to my surprise (and delight) it was "Severe Weather Awareness Day" the perfect place for a weather junkie like myself to hob-knob with my fellow weather wizards.

Outside of the Science Spectrum on display were some brand-new shiny (hail-dent free) storm chase vehicles.

I peered inside and licked on the glass as I saw them packed with all kinds of weather gizmos, and as anyone knows, I love weather gizmos!

This one was a scout vehicle for Texas Tech's Severe University Severe Weather Research Team. Get a good look at it now,, because the next time you see it, it should be covered in hail dents.

To the uninitiated it looked like someone had spent a lot of money on plumbing supplies at Home Depot, cobbled them together with some model airplane parts and strapped them to the roof.

In actuality this funky looking array of pipes and probes were weather sensing devices helpful in getting Tech's brand spanking new 38 GHz super duper digital portable doppler on wheels to the right storms (this season) at the right time.

Josh Wurman eat your heart out!

Much more compact, efficient and capable of higher resolution radar data than your average DOW, this (first of two) new radars on wheels represents the cutting edge in mobile weather sensing technology.

After talking (at length) to the engineer in charge of the Texas Tech radar project, I made a mental note to contact my friends at Popular Science Magazine about this new doppler darling because I'm sure it would make a good Tech (no pun intended) story for the mag.

I'll post more photos of this new DOW and what went on inside soon.


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