The avalanche radar is an effective technology for reliable automatic avalanche detection. It offers crucial advantages over conventional, local sensor that are installed in a known flow path. Radar works in any weather and at any time of day, has a range of up to 5 km and covers large avalanche slopes with a single device.
Benefits and features
- up to 5 km range and a coverage of up to 10 km²
- automatically triggers alerts in case of an avalanche
- separates different flow paths and shows them on an interactive map
- all-weather suitability (works in rain, fog, snowfall)
- works day and night
- quick installation (few hours)
- cost-effective compared to construction measures
- easy data control through the Geopraevent online data portal
- integration with smartphone and tablet
- easy to combine with other technologies and alarm-functions
- combination of multiple radars for larger coverage possible
The avalanche radar is designed to provide an early warning of avalanches and to trigger an alarm. In the event of an avalanche, roads and railway lines are automatically closed within seconds and people in the danger area are reliably alerted. The avalanche radar is also applied for avalanche control works to verify the success of an artificially triggered avalanche. Without radar, this is particularly challenging in darkness or bad weather conditions (fog, snow, rain).
The radar locates the avalanche and tracks it as long as it is within the field of view. At the same time, the radar triggers a system-integrated camera that automatically records images or a video of the event. The station transmits all avalanche data to the online data portal, where the avalanche is displayed on an area map including avalanche characteristics (time, duration, speed, size, etc.) and photos.
A statistical evaluation of the avalanche detections in winter 2017/18 by the avalanche radar in Zermatt showed that more than 80% of the avalanches occurred in poor or no visibility. Click here for the avalanche radar infographics!
The online data portal displays the avalanche on an area map along with the measured characteristics and a photo series.
To date, we have implemented more than 40 avalanche radar projects on three continents. We currently operate over 20 avalanche radar systems in Switzerland, Norway, Chile and Canada.
Here is a selection of avalanche radar customer projects:
- Range: up to 5 km
- Coverage: up to 10 km²
- Antenna opening angle horizontal: 90°
- Antenna opening angle vertical: 15°
- Weight: approx. 50 kg
- Dimensions: 25 x 40 x 7 cm
- Energy consumption: approx. 50 W
- Power supply: grid power, solar panel, fuel cell
- Software: avalanche-detection-algorithm, online data portal
- Integration: online data portal, smartphone, tablet
- Alarm: automatic alert option, other alarm-functions
- Installation: quick, few hours
A radar module with smaller range and monitoring area is also available.
- Automatic avalanche alarm and glacier warning system Randa, ISSW 2018 extended abstract
- Avalanche detection for road safety in Norway (Holmbuktura), ISSW 2018 ectended abstract
- Automatic people detection system Zermatt, ISSW 2018 extended abstract
- Real-time avalanche detection, ISSW 2016 extended abstract
- Radar-based Warning and Alarm Systems for Alpine Mass Movements, Interpraevent 2016 Paper