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Lifting of radome base for OU-PRIME
Installation of 8.5-meter dish for OU-PRIME
Completion of radome for OU-PRIME
Commissioning of OU-PRIME on April 4, 2009
OU-PRIME after completion, September 2009

OU-PRIME (Polarimetric Radar for Innovations in Meteorology and Engineering) was an advanced Doppler weather radar. It was completed in January 2009 after a ten-month construction period and commissioned on April 4, 2009.[1][2] It is operated by the Advanced Radar Research Center (ARRC) at the University of Oklahoma (OU). The radar was manufactured by Enterprise Electronics Corporation to provide OU students and faculty a platform for research and education in the field of radar meteorology. This C-band polarimetric radar has some of the highest resolution data of any C-band weather radar in the United States.[1][2][3][4]

OU-PRIME was struck by lightning on 19 March 2012 around 9:20am local time. Since then, the radar has not been operated due to damage.[1]

System characteristics[edit]

OU-PRIME, aka OU', is located on the Research Campus of the University of Oklahoma within walking distance of the National Weather Center building. Through a unique design, OU-PRIME can provide real-time time-series data providing opportunities for rapid developments in radar signal processing algorithms. Because of its C-band wavelength and 1 MW transmit power, OU-PRIME is extremely sensitive to clouds with approximately 10 dB more sensitivity over the NEXRAD system (S-band).


  • Location 35°10′48.8″N 97°26′0.6″W / 35.180222°N 97.433500°W / 35.180222; -97.433500Coordinates: 35°10′48.8″N 97°26′0.6″W / 35.180222°N 97.433500°W / 35.180222; -97.433500
  • Radiating Center Height is 80 feet (24.4 m)
  • Operating frequency: 5510 MHz (C-band)
    • Wavelength: 5.44 cm
    • Pulse Length: 0.4, 0.8, 1.0, 2.0 µs
    • Pulse Repetition Frequency: 300–2000 Hz, 1 Hz step
  • 1 MW Peak Power (magnetron with solid-state modulator)
  • 8.5-meter Andrew precision C-band dish
    • High angular resolution: 0.45 degrees @ -3 dB points
    • Gain: 50 dBi
    • Sidelobe Level: Better than -26 dB one-way
    • Cross-Pol: Better than -30 dB
  • Rotation rate: 6-25 deg/s under typical scanning (30 deg/s max)
  • Minimum Detectable Signal: -112 dBm
    • Radar Sensitivity: -15 dBZ at 50 km
    • Noise Figure: 3 dB
  • Simultaneous dual-polarization
  • Flexible computing platform for real-time algorithm development
  • Real-time I/Q data recording/processing
    • A/D converter resolution: 16 bit
    • Receiver bandwidth: 6 MHz
    • Gate spacing: 25–500 m
    • Number of range gates: up to 2200
    • Clutter suppression: 60 dB (automatic detection/suppression using CLEAN-AP [1])
    • Advanced signal processing framework based on new STEP algorithm, including clutter estimation/suppression and multi-lag moment estimation

Research and educational pursuits[edit]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Advanced Radar Research Center (April 3, 2009). "THE UNIVERSITY OF OKLAHOMA TO HOLD COMMISSIONING CEREMONY FOR NEWEST RADAR" (pdf). University of Oklahoma. Retrieved 2009-04-15. [dead link]
  2. ^ a b Clark Foy (January 2009). "Hi-def radar comes to South Campus". The Oklahoma Daily. Retrieved 2009-04-15. 
  3. ^ Bryan Painter (March 7, 2009). "OU-PRIME captures information from February tornado". The Oklahoman Direct. Retrieved 2009-04-15. 
  4. ^ a b Advanced Radar Research Center. "OU-PRIME" (pdf). University of Oklahoma. Retrieved 2009-04-15. [dead link]