At Weather Radar New Zealand we work closely with collaborators from different institutions across New Zealand and overseas. But, what are we involved in at the moment?

Public Statement: Climate change projections signal an increase in the intensity of extreme rainfall in coming decades. Heavy, localised rainfall is responsible for many natural hazards, from poor water quality to the diabolical effects of flooding, erosion and landslides. Although, significant effort has been made to develop models aimed at mitigating these hazards and providing advance warnings, these efforts have been hampered by the availability of suitable rainfall observations. Rain gauge accumulations are often the only viable option, though are particularly ill-suited for detecting high-intensity rainfall events due to the poor spatial coverage of the observations. In contrast, weather radar measures both the instantaneous rainfall intensity and its spatial coverage; this information can be disseminated in real time. However, national weather radar observations are still too coarse for manyhazard modelling applications. This Smart Idea will create world-first, hybrid radar systems for rainfall observation. Uniquely, profiling the vertical structure of rain and drop size distributions. Incorporating this information in scanning radar observations, allows rainfall to be mapped with exceptional spatial and temporal resolution, and unprecedented accuracy. Systems will be deployed directly in regions of interest, observing intense and rapidly-evolving rainfall with unprecedented detail, so the project partners (GNS, NIWA, Auckland Council and Scion) can improve their hazard models. This will revolutionise the ability of decision makers to understand, predict and respond to the threats of rainfall-induced landslides, forestry catchment erosion, flooding and water quality in urban, semi-urban, rural and natural environments. For the first time, rain drop size distribution profiles will be used to quantify rainfall processes in mountainous, coastal regions, resulting in dramatically improved weather forecasts in regions prone to extreme rainfall.

  • [2020-2025] Collaboration with the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) in the successful completion of the MBIE Endeavour funded project - Reducing flood inundation hazard and risk across Aotearoa-New Zealand

Provision and analysis of radar and gauge rainfall observations. Attributes of severe rain events only observable using radar measurements to be described and quantified to enable the generation of more accurate design storms.

This 3 years project leverages infrastructure platforms for flood management in Bangkok, Indonesia.

  • [2020 - 2021] Consultancy for the University of Reading (UK) on the European Space Agency funded project - Algorithms for accurate radar rainfall estimates

Regarding the comparison of a new technique for measuring rainfall from satellite with legacy CloudSat rainfall products.

  • [2019 - 2021] Consultancy for the University of Reading (UK) on the UK Natural Environment Research Council funded project - A new technique for measuring global rainfall

Regarding the development and validation of attenuation-based estimation of rainfall rates at 94GHz for satellite observations

  • Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) for Safeswim - a website that provides up to date information about water quality and safety hazards across the different Auckland region swimming spots.

  • Radar data analysis for Wellington Water.

  • Expert consultancy for post event analysis following flooding.

How can we help you?

Talk to us about your specific project requirements. Get in touch here