Weather service removes Wichita radar dome for upgrades

WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) It was a rare sight at the National Weather Service in Wichita on Friday as the radar dome was removed for upgrades.

Ken Cook, a meteorologist with the weather service, says it's exciting to see because it's a once in a career event.

The upgrades are needed to extend the radar dome's life span for the next 20 years. With tornado season around the corner, Cook says the dome needs to be ready

"We want that radar up to protect lives and property for our partners, customers and those that we serve here in south-central and southeast Kansas," said Cook.

Storm Team 12 Meteorologist Merril Teller remembers the last time the radar dome was removed to start of the Doppler radar.

Teller says making room for future technology with the radar dome can provide faster warnings to viewers

"Our number one thing always has been, always will be, is safety," said Teller.

With severe weather season just weeks away, faster, more accurate data can make a difference, says Teller.

"Even with ice storms there is information to determine what the temperatures are in the different parts of the atmosphere that are going to tell us the difference between rain, freezing rain, sleet and snow and we need that information to keep the viewer informed," he said.

Wichita is one of 100 radar locations getting these technology upgrades nationwide. You can read more about the project here: <>National Weather Service announces radar outage during major upgrade.