The University of Alabama in Huntsville has received 20 Infrasound Collection Element small sensors from General Atomics‘ electromagnetic systems subsidiary to support early tornado detection research and real-time tornado tracking.
General Atomics said Monday the sensor works to gather radar-independent “infrasound” data that can be used to predict the path of a storm and potentially increase lead times for warnings on severe weather.
ICE sensors across North Alabama have helped gather signals from multiple large tornadoes in 2011 from 62 miles away in correlation with the documented tornado path, the company added.
“The use of infrasound in tornado detection has the potential to identify spectral emissions, or signatures, indicating the existence or progression of a tornado on the ground,”said Nick Bucci, missile defense and space systems vice president at GA-EMS.
“Such information enables higher detection confidence and increased lead times for severe weather warnings in threat areas that current solutions are unable to match.”
General Atomics said ICE can be used for field deployments and extreme environments and can also be utilized for nuclear explosion monitoring, hurricane detection and avalanche monitoring.