NEW YORK – August 1, 2016 – NBCUniversal Owned Television Stations, a division of NBCUniversal, today announced the deployment of the first-of-its-kind fleet of mobile Doppler weather radar trucks, each named StormRanger (CazaTormentas in Spanish). The NBC Owned Television Stations and Telemundo Station Group are the only broadcasters in the country with vehicles carrying the most advanced mobile weather radar system in the nation. Each X-Band, Doppler, dual polarization radar will gather, in real-time, weather and meteorological information the existing network of fixed radars can miss.
The first StormRanger debuts in the Philadelphia market today and will roam the Northeast corridor. Two more StormRangers will launch by the start of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games and will cover the Dallas-Fort Worth, Chicago, Southern California, and Bay Area markets. All three mobile radars will service the NBC- and Telemundo-owned stations throughout the country.
Local audiences will be able track the StormRangers through NBC- and Telemundo-owned stations’ desktop and mobile web sites, and station apps. Additionally, app users will receive push notifications when StormRangers are tracking storms and severe weather in their home market. Having real-time access to this crucial weather information may help viewers better prepare for and keep their families safe from severe weather.
“We are boosting our weather forecasting capabilities by building, from scratch, the first-of-its-kind fleet of mobile weather radars in the country because we know how important weather is to our viewers,” said Valari Staab, President, NBCUniversal Owned Television Stations. “All of our stations will have access to this groundbreaking weather technology so they can deliver even more lifesaving weather information to their communities.”
The StormRangers feature an X-band, dual polarization, Doppler weather radar with a range of 75 miles fixed atop a Dodge Ram truck. This game-changing technology enables the NBC- and Telemundo-owned stations’ Meteorologists to position the trucks in locations where they can see around terrain that has previously been unreachable by fixed weather radars.
"This radar technology and mobile configuration is a first for any TV station or network of stations in the U.S," said Richard Stedronsky, a meteorologist and director of strategic business development and partnerships at Enterprise Electronics Corporation. "The NBC and Telemundo owned stations are the first to deploy a fleet of mobile Doppler radars in the nation."
The StormRanger’s high-resolution and narrow-pulse radars also have the capability to scan storms at the lowest atmospheric layers, allowing meteorologists to determine the exact location of a storm, including its strength, its speed and where it’s headed. Each StormRanger will also be better able to detect snow, light rain, hail, and particles in the atmosphere, as well as tornado debris fields and smoke.
“The radar beam from a fixed radar is too high in the atmosphere to see lower weather phenomena, but that’s where severe weather takes place – in the lowest parts of the atmosphere. With StormRanger, you can take your viewers to the weather and gather information that a traditional fixed radar could be missing,” added Stedronsky.
Led by NBCUniversal’s strong belief in local broadcasting and the company’s investment in its local stations, NBCUniversal Owned Television Stations is transforming the way that television stations inform their viewers, in two languages and across all platforms, to help them stay ahead of their latest local news and stay safe when severe weather threatens to affect their local communities.
About NBCUniversal Owned Television Stations
NBCUniversal Owned Television Stations is the division of NBCUniversal that includes 28 NBC and Telemundo local television stations, a regional news network and their associated websites and digital platforms, as well as a group of out-of-home properties, a production company, an in-house marketing and promotions company and two national multicast networks, COZI TV and TeleXitos. The local stations, which can be viewed in 36 percent of U.S. homes and Puerto Rico, produce and deliver compelling and unique local news, information and entertainment programming to viewers in the communities they serve, with a goal of connecting to their English and Spanish-speaking audiences anytime and anywhere.