TDS is composed of software and hardware elements incorporating a two-frequency spaceborne radar system for measuring tropical precipitation. The TDS would be used primarily in generating data products for scientific investigations. The most novel part of the TDS would be expert-system software to aid in the selection of algorithms for converting raw radar-return data into such primary observables as rain rate, path integrated rain rate, and surface backscatter. The expert-system approach would address the issue that selection of algorithms for processing the data requires a significant amount of preprocessing, non-intuitive reasoning, and heuristic application, making it infeasible, in many cases, to select the proper algorithm in real time. In the TDS, tentative selections would be made to enable conversions in real time. The expert system would remove straightforwardly convertible data from further consideration, and would examine ambiguous data, performing analysis in depth to determine which algorithms to select. Conversions performed by these algorithms, presumed to be correct, would be compared with the corresponding real-time conversions. Incorrect real-time conversions would be updated using the correct conversions.

This work was done by Mark James of Caltech for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. For further information, access the Technical Support Package (TSP) free online at under the Information Sciences category.

The software used in this innovation is available for commercial licensing. Please contact Karina Edmonds of the California Institute of Technology at (626) 395-2322. Refer to NPO-42515.

This Brief includes a Technical Support Package (TSP).
Assistant for Analyzing Tropical-Rain-Mapping Radar Data

(reference NPO-42515) is currently available for download from the TSP library.

Don't have an account? Sign up here.

NASA Tech Briefs Magazine

This article first appeared in the September, 2006 issue of NASA Tech Briefs Magazine.

Read more articles from the archives here.