Students receive grant to chase snowstorms

An $86,000 grant that will enable Oswego State meteorology students to chase lake effect snowstorms with new and improved data has been passed.

The snowstorms will be tracked with a Doppler-On-Wheels, a dual polarimetric device that sends out radio waves that scan both horizontally and vertically to gather information about storms.

The project will begin during the end of December and last through early February. Ten meteorology students will be accepted to work on the project and will be staying on campus during the winter break.

Scott Steiger, assistant professor of meteorology, said they received the grant through the National Science Foundation, which is the federal funding agency.

The Doppler-On-Wheels will be able to track where the storm is and how intense it is.

"We’ll be able to drive right up to the storm," Steiger said.

Evan Duffey, president of the meteorology club, is hoping to be accepted as one of the 10 students to participate in the project.

"We’ll be the first people to see these kinds of images," Duffey said.

Using the dual-polarimetric radar, the shapes of the particles in the snowstorm will be shown, such as hail or snow.

Steiger said that although meteorology is unpredictable, weather balloons have been used at Oswego State to measure the temperature, humidity and wind.