NWC REU 2007
May 29 - August 2



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Communicating Weather Radar Research to Public Audiences: The Proposal

Rachel Butterworth and Kevin Kloesel



Currently the National Science Foundation (NSF) is seeking proposals to communicate NSF-funded research programs to public audiences. The American public generally supports government funded scientific research. However, despite their favorable attitude, Americans are scientifically illiterate. Weather radar is one of the most important tools for both forecasting and meteorological research. It is also a useful tool for the public. It is crucial the public understands at least some of what is being accomplished in regards to weather radar research because one informed decision during a hazardous weather event may mean the difference between life and death. A proposal was written to use video and web-based material to teach the public about weather radar research, past and present. A literature review was conducted across multiple disciplines prior to constructing the proposal in order to determine the most effective way to teach the public about weather radar. In addition, a survey instrument will be used to determine the public's knowledge-level of weather radar; information that will further shape the content of the proposed video and web-based material.

Full Paper [PDF]