There are more meteorologist looking at the Paducah radar data tonight than your normal night. Right now, the Paducah radar site has something that weather geeks around the world want to see and analize.
It' "Super Resolution" radar data! Below is an image from the Paducah site this evening. As you see, there was a large area of heavy rain near Poplar Bluff.
So, you probably want to know what "Super Resolution" is and what it means to the science of meteorology. Well, let me try to explain. Legacy radar data has the resolution of 1KM. This means that every "pixel" is a sampling of 1KM of the area of being scanned. The new Super Resolution data will have 0.25 km resolution! This will make for a more precise radar! The below image is from the Memphis radar. It still outputs the legacy 1km resolution. As of right now, Paducah is the only operational site with this technology. Paducah will beta test this for a few weeks and then all NWS Doppler radars will switch over! Can you tell the difference?
You are probably thinking to yourself... "It always looks smoother on TV". Well, that's true. Most radar software companies offer a "smoothing" feature. This will not be as important as the Super Resolution data becomes a reality across the country. Below is an image of the Super Resolution data with the smoothing feature enabled.
Be on the lookout for this new data to hit the airwaves soon!