Rainfall measurement using radio links from cellular communication networks

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Abstract

[1] We investigate the potential of radio links such as employed by commercial cellular communication companies to monitor path-averaged rainfall. We present an analysis of data collected using two 38-GHz links during eight rainfall events over a 2-month period (October–November 2003) during mostly stratiform rainfall in the Netherlands. Comparisons between the time series of rainfall intensities estimated using the radio links and those measured by a nearby rain gauge and a composite of two C band weather radars show that the dynamics of the rain events is generally well captured by the radio links. This shows that such links are potentially a valuable addition to existing methods of rainfall estimation, provided the uncertainties related to the reference signal level, signal level resolution, wet antenna attenuation, and temporal sampling can be resolved.

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