SR/SSD 96-35


Technical Attachment


Tim Crum
WSR-88D Operational Support Facility
Norman, Oklahoma

Following is a summary of the various UNIX-based software programs that are in use and/or available for use with wideband/Level II data. Except as noted, all of the software and systems described below were developed by the National Severe Storms Laboratory (NSSL), working in collaboration with the OSF.

Radar Interface and Data Distribution System (RIDDS). The RIDDS is the only approved interface to a WSR-88D to provide real-time wideband data (base products) to external users. The RIDDS uses a Sun SPARC 5 workstation and provides an Ethernet hub to permit multiple users to connect simultaneously. No products or algorithm output are available. It is by means of RIDDS that universities, say, may obtain real-time base data. At this time such connections exist in the Southern Region at NWSO Houston and NWSO Melbourne. External access involves a formal procedure which includes change requests, memoranda of agreement, approval by the local URC, and other steps. SSD can provide full information to offices or universities that may be interested in establishing such links.

Radar Algorithm Display System (RADS). The RADS is in essence the "graphics engine" for the WDSS and WATADS (described below). The RADS itself does not execute algorithms.

Radar Utilities and Data Distribution System (RUDDS). The RUDDS is the radar product generator for WDSS. RUDDS is used to execute experimental algorithms for real-time algorithm performance evaluation as part of the WDSS.

Warning Decision Support System (WDSS). The WDSS configuration acquires data via a RIDDS and has two SPARC 20s--one to act as a radar product generator (RUDDS) and another (RADS) to act as a PUP or user interface. The WDSS provides the capability to execute prototype algorithms and test new types of displays in real-time. A limited number of WDSS systems have been deployed at WSR-88D sites, and no others are available at this time.

WSR-88D Algorithm Testing and Display System (WATADS). Portions of RADS and WDSS were used, along with four prototype algorithms and selected baseline WSR-88D algorithms, to create the WATADS. WATADS uses recorded Level II data only; no real-time data usage is possible. The executable code is available for distribution to NEXRAD agencies, universities and laboratories, and other groups collaborating with the NEXRAD agencies. WATADS runs on HP workstations, but a Sun version will be available by the end of summer this year. WATADS is used for developing case studies, conducting adaptable parameter studies, and developing training scenarios, all using recorded Level II data. All SOOs should have WATADS available for use on their SAC workstations.

Interactive Radar Analysis Software (IRAS). The IRAS was developed by the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology and can be obtained by contacting the Institute of Atmospheric Sciences, or via Internet at URL Two versions of the IRAS software are available: Sun-IRAS and Motif-IRAS. Sun-IRAS runs on Sun-SPARC stations running the OpenLook window manager. Motif-IRAS runs on workstations running the Motif window manager and is currently supported on Sun, HP, and IBM workstations. This program provides several radar data manipulations, including display base products, magnify, contour, cross sections, and looping.

WSR-88D Visualization Software (WVS). The WVS was developed by the NSSL, and software is available from the NCDC. It was one of the first software packages that displayed WSR-88D Level II data which was available for general release. This software uses recorded Level II data and it can run on Sun, HP, SGI, and IBM workstations. The WVS displays the three moments of base data. The source and executable code is available to requestors. Map backgrounds and zoom capability are available.