(Washington, D.C.) The National Weather Service (NWS) network of NEXRAD radars could soon be enlisted in the battle against global warming. The radars usual mode of operation is to broadcast microwave energy throughout the atmosphere, a small portion of which is reflected back to the radar if precipitation is present, leading to the familiar weather radar images we are used to seeing of TV and internet weather websites.
But now the radars' unique ability to scan the atmosphere is being considered by NWS for an entirely new mission: weather control. Or, more specifically, temperature control.
To accomplish this function, the radars are operated in reverse mode, absorbing microwave energy that is naturally emitted by the atmosphere rather than sending out extra energy generated at the radar installation. The energy that is received by the radars can help lower atmospheric temperatures by up to three degrees F per day. The radar frequency must be tuned to be in the range of 50 to 60 gigahertz (GHz) where oxygen in the atmosphere gives off large amounts of thermal energy.
"By tuning these radars to the proper frequency, and flipping a single switch from 'transmit' to 'receive', we can essentially 'suck up' all that excess thermal energy that is due to global warming," explained Dr. Robert Watson-Watt, Director of the NWS Weather Modification and Control Division. "We then transmit the excess energy deep into the ground, where it harmlessly dissipates."
The new technology is very simple, explained Dr. Watson-Watt, and was stumbled upon by an engineer at a U.S. company that designs microwave ovens. "The story is that the engineer, during a lunch break, accidentally flipped the 'transmit' switch to 'receive' on a test apparatus, and within five minutes the cup of water that was supposed to boil was frozen solid". Since the weather radars have a duty cycle of only 50%, half of the radar scanning time is available to operate in the new 'weather control' mode.
Spokesperson for Greenpolice, Rainbow Treetower, expressed concern over the new technology, saying, "Isn't this just what we expect from scientists? First they screw things up by inventing cars, which cause global warming, and then they invent some other contraption to try to fix their mistakes". Ms. Treetower also expressed concern that, if the radars were to transmit at the new thermally-active frequencies, the resulting burst of extra energy could actually warm the atmosphere to dangerous levels rather than cool it.
When asked about such concerns, Dr. Watson-Watt explained, "Congressional legislation has expressly forbidden such activity by most government agencies…except for specific defense related projects, such as HAARP up in Alaska…oops….I don't think I was supposed to mention that…"
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