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Press Release

June 28, 2016

The Weather Channel Television Network Revolutionizes How it Covers Hurricanes and Tropical Storms

Network unveils three augmented reality products to enhance storytelling

ATLANTA (June 16, 2016) -- With this hurricane season off to a historic start, The Weather Channel television network has created revolutionary new products to visualize live storm data to prepare Americans for hurricanes and tropical storms. State-of-the-art augmented reality technology combined with the network’s team of tropical experts and experienced meteorologists deliver and communicate the forecast in ways viewers have never been seen before.
Three new augmented reality products visualize real data in a 3D presentation:
  • Surge FX wows the viewer with a realistic 2 scale surge forecast.  A house, a car and even our talent is immersed into a flooded studio providing the audience with a haunting and realistic view of the dangers of storm surge.  It highlights the exact storm surge threat for cities and towns in the path of a tropical event. 
  • Shear Factor provides a new take on a classic tropical forecasting tool.  By showing real data in three dimensions our viewers can now see what wind shear truly looks like while our tropical team of experts uses the data to help show why a storm may or may not develop in the coming days.  
  • Tropical Replay is a high-tech, first of its kind visualization tool where the data from tracks of past storms inform a current storm's future path. This will be illustrated in a transparent, 3D virtual screen.
“While these products will undoubtedly have the effect of dazzling the viewers with technology never before seen in live television, the purpose is to educate and warn using actual data transmitted from National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the National Hurricane Center,” said Nora Zimmett, senior vice president, live programming for The Weather Channel television network. “For tropical systems, we can now go well beyond forecasting wind speeds and storm surge. We can show, hours in advance, how they will impact specific communities-even down to the neighborhood.”
These cutting-edge visual presentations and compelling storytelling provide viewers with a deeper understanding of the science behind weather especially in life threatening situations.
For field coverage, the network has a fleet of a half a dozen storm vehicles that are equipped with multiple cameras, live transmission and LED lighting to be able to do live shots wherever and whenever the storm hits. Crews are prepared to deploy these vehicles in advance of the storm to be able to cover all impacted areas of a land-falling hurricane. Through our partnership with Facebook Live, the network will be able to extend its live, field coverage to a new audience.
The Weather Channel television network
For more than 30 years, The Weather Channel television network has inspired viewers to explore, investigate and appreciate the experience of weather in all its forms. One of the most widely distributed cable networks, The Weather Channel is the leader in severe weather coverage, providing the most comprehensive coverage of any media outlet, and with trusted meteorologists who analyze, forecast and report the weather - its expertise is unrivaled. The network is owned by a consortium made up of NBC Universal and the private equity firms The Blackstone Group and Bain Capital. For more information visit weathergroup.com.