Weather Radar for Charters Towers
Townsville (Hervey Range)LOCATION: Hervey RangeTYPE: DWSR 2502 C bandAVAILABILITY: 24 hours
Interpretation Notes: The site at Hervey Range is at elevation (590m) making it a fairly good site for Townsville's main weather watch radar. It does however suffer some obstruction to its view due to the higher terrain around the region. Mt Elliott (1234m) lies approximately 40km to the ESE and considerably restricts the radar's ability to see light to moderate precipitation echoes in that direction. The Hervey Range itself to the west and the Paluma Range to the northwest can obscure early development of thunderstorms, but fully developed storms are picked up well. SE trade wind showers are common along the coast during the dry season and the radar's range for these extends from offshore Innisfail to Bowen. It is possible that coastal locations between these towns and locations inland of Ingham may experience light to moderate showers that are not picked up on the Hervey Range radar, that might be detected by the adjacent radars at Bowen (Abbot Point) and Cairns (Saddle Mountain). Very distant showers in the Coral Sea may also not be better detected by these adjacent radars due to their superior ocean outlook. Low level drizzle can also go undetected due to the radar beam going over the top of the precipitation. Heavy rain over the radar site will cause attenuation of all signals. Path attenuation also occurs when the radar beam passes through an intense thunderstorm cell; the returned signal from cells further along that path will be reduced. Apart from these features, the radar performs well and gives a reasonably accurate representation of rainfall intensity.