Hydro-NEXRAD-2 (HNX2) is a prototype system that allows hydrologic users real-time access to NEXRAD radar data in support of a wide range of research. The system processes basic radar data (Level II) and delivers radar-rainfall products based on the user's custom selection of features such as spatial domain, rainfall product space and time resolution, and rainfall estimation algorithms. HNX2 collects real-time, unprocessed data from multiple NEXRAD radars as they become available, processes them through a user-configurable pipeline of data-processing modules, and publishes the processed data-products at regular intervals. Modules in the data-processing pipeline encapsulate algorithms such as non-meteorological echo detection, radar range correction, radar-reflectivity-rain rate (Z-R) conversion, echo advection correction, mosaicking of products from multiple radars, and grid projections and transformations. This paper describes the challenges involved in HNX2's development and implementation, which include real-time error-handling, time-synchronization of data from multiple asynchronous sources, generation of multiple-radar metadata products, and distribution of products to a user base with diverse needs and constraints. HNX2 publishes products through automation and allows multiple users access to published products. Currently, HNX2 is serving near real-time rain-rate maps for Iowa in the USA using data from seven radars covering the state. Hydrologic models operated by The University of Iowa's Iowa Flood Center use these products. © IWA Publishing 2013.


Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering

Publication Status

Free Access

Keywords and Phrases

Hydro-NEXRAD; NEXRAD; Real-time rainfall estimation; Super-resolution

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)


Document Type

Article - Journal

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Final Version

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Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Publication Date

01 Jan 2013