Researchers Developing Drones To Predict Severe Weather

Friday, October 2nd 2015, 9:55 am
By: News 9

We know that meteorologists rely on all kinds of computer models and data to give us an accurate forecast. But soon, new technology could give them an even better look at the atmosphere, including severe weather.

The next time storm clouds build, drones may navigate right through them.

The University of Colorado-Boulder received part of a nearly $2 million grant to develop drones capable of studying storms from the inside.

Each aircraft is about nine feet across, and will be able to fly into tornado-producing storms. Researchers hope the information they gather will allow meteorologists to warn of tornadoes earlier than ever before.

"This project is about increasing our understanding so that those forecasts can be done in a better way,” Director of Research Eric Frew said.

OU and OSU are working on a similar program and researchers there are calling it a "game changer." They say drones could increase the average lead warning time for tornadoes from just a few minutes to almost an hour.

9/1/2015 Related Story: OU, OSU Team Up To Develop Drones For Predicting Severe Weather