8:15 AM Wednesday: No anomalies on radar this morning…just heavy storms. We’re still trying to figure out what that mystery blob was yesterday. If we find out, we will let you know.
10:15 PM Tuesday: There is still no official word on what this radar anomaly over Huntsville is. It’s still there at 10:15 PM, though. Whatever it is, it’s showing less and less reflectivity by the minute, so it may dissipate soon.
If anyone fesses up to what it is, we’ll pass it on! I get the idea it’s nothing to be worried about; if it is something from the Arsenal, we may never know exactly what happened if it is indeed a test of some sort.
6:30 PM Update: Whatever it is, it’s still there!
The National Weather Service in Huntsville and some of UAHuntsville’s radar experts are collaborating to try to crack this mystery. If anyone can figure it out, it’ll probably be the folks at UAH. We’ll let you know when new information is available.
6:00 PM Update: Just got a note from Bill at Huntsville Utilities; they found no damage or strange frequency coming from the substation. Back to the drawing board…
We may never know what it is if it’s coming from a test at the Arsenal. Top secret stuff trumps our desire to know what’s going on.
4:50 PM Update: I just got off the phone with Bill Yell at Huntsville Utilities, and it appears that this mystery blob could be the result of a damaged substation in the Madison or West Huntsville area. Huntsville Utilities is sending out a person with a spectral analyzer to see if indeed there is some kind of frequency being generated at the substation that would “trick” the radar into thinking there is something there.
It may be later tonight or even tomorrow before we know if that is the cause, but since UAH has not seen anything resembling chaff, clouds, or anything else in their ceilometer readings, it sounds plausible at this point. Bill says there are no service problems in the area, so any “damage” at a substation could have been done by lightning weakening some of the components in last weekend’s storms.
In fact, Bill said RF interference created by a substation damaged by a lightning strike is not out of the ordinary, and it can do some strange things to sensors like radars, radios, etc.
We will see!
No, we don’t know what that blob on radar is over West Huntsville this afternoon. It’s centered near the northwest edge of Redstone Arsenal close to Zierdt Road and Madison Boulevard/I-565.
What we do know is there is no smoke, the sky is clear (underneath a few passing clouds), and it’s not rain.
My guess is that we won’t ever find out what it is because it’s probably a result of a military test.
If they tell us what it is, we’ll let you know!