NWS radar upgrades good news for East Mississippi

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Earlier this year, the National Weather Service in Jackson received approval from National Weather Service headquarters to make some changes and upgrades to the radar site in Brandon.

Now those changes have been implemented, and they are good news for us in East Mississippi and West Alabama.

The radar's beam scans the sky at various tilts. The lowest angle of the tilt at most National Weather Service radar sites is 0.5 degrees. The change may seem small. The lowest tilt angle is now 0.3 degrees above the horizon.

That lower angle will allow the center of the radar beam to pass more than 1,000 feet close to the ground at an elevation of 4,925 feet over Meridian. The lower angle will also allow the radar to "see" farther into West Alabama.

All of this means better coverage and better data closer to the ground for us in East Mississippi and West Alabama. It helps us see the lower levels of storms better so we can better warn for tornadoes and other severe weather.