Darrell Crall, Director of Tournament Operations, Carolinas PGA Section

"Severe weather – specifically lightning – poses the greatest threat to the safety of the competitors. The proper use of the M-10 Detector has proved invaluable for me personally as well as for the staff at the Carolinas PGA. Combined with weather updates from the National Weather Service from a local airport, the M-10 has become necessary equipment for the effective conduct of golf operations.

At a Carolinas PGA major championship last year, the local weather service had predicted severe Weather for the afternoon. I periodically monitored the situation with the M-10 Detector. When I picked up significant cloud to cloud lightning in the eight to ten mile range, I suspended play. The competitors resisted due to the fact that bright sunshine was overhead. Approximately 15 minutes after the course had been cleared, a bolt of lightning struck the ground less than 50 yards from the clubhouse. Shortly thereafter, a funnel cloud fell from the sky. Needless to say, I have not had a problem since convincing players to suspend play.

As we all know, weather can be quite unpredictable; however, prudent measures can prevent many unnecessary accidents. I can attest to the fact that I would be afraid to conduct a golf tournament without the M-10 Detector at my side."

Home

Bob Stearns, Electronics Editor, Salt Water Sportsman

"The detector has two modes: Optical and Distant RF. When in the Optical mode, it can actually “see” lightning discharges within the clouds that are otherwise invisible to the human eye during daylight. I'll explain the role these intra-cloud strokes play shortly. In the Distant RF Mode, the unit detects all lightning strokes, both intra-cloud and cloud-to-ground, within a range of 30 to 50 miles. By using these two sources of information together it is possible to get a good idea just how threatening an oncoming mass of clouds might be.

By that day, when I pointed the unit at the clouds and switched to the Optical mode, it never uttered a single peep. Yet when I switched to the Distant RF mode it sounded like someone pounding out Morse Code at a fast clip. The inference was clear enough: the visible line of clouds actually did contain only rain, but somewhere behind them lurked a mass of intense electrical storm activity. Exactly how far behind, we had no way of knowing, but the warning that they would be upon us shortly convinced us to head for the dock. By the time the severe weather arrived, my boat was on the trailer and we were on the road home.

Anyone afloat in anything of less than an ocean-liner proportions who doesn't take the threat of lightning seriously has either left his brains on the dock or is a candidate for the funny farm. Big cabin boats can suffer (at least) expensive damage to electronics. But in an open skiff, where your body is the tallest thing for many miles in all directions, the danger is greatest... You can always see cloud-to-ground lightning during the day, and all forms of lightning during the night, but actually it is those daylight-invisible intra-cloud discharges that offer the best warning of the potential severity of a thunderstorm.

The more frequent these hidden strokes, the more intense the overall electrical properties of the storm and the greater the threat of dangerous cloud-to-ground lightning strokes. And there's a strong correlation between intra-cloud lightning frequency and the strength of the downdraft within the cloud. It is this downdraft that becomes the sudden, sometimes shrieking surface winds which accompany very strong thunderstorms... Best of all, it really does what it is designed to do!"

Home

D.F. Davis, Director, Marion County Emergency Service, Yellville, Arkansas

"I have been using your equipment in our local severe storms preparedness operations. The jurisdiction I serve is located far beyond the reach of National Weather Service radar. We are “on our own” in this area and must provide our own storm detection, tracking and early warning to the general public of approaching severe weather. I wish to report that I am excited about the new technology your equipment represents in this field.

I would not wish to be without the M-10 Intracloud Lightning Detector when severe weather threatens. Its long range detection is a MUST for my operations and the affordable price, reliability and compact design make it the most indispensable storm detection instrument we have ever used.

I commend you for your efforts in this field. I am certain many lives will be saved during severe weather."

Home

Brian Henning, Tournament Director, Senior PGA Tour

"We have had the Optical Lightning Detector in operation for the past six months... Without the use of the detector, we always had to rely on the local weather service and our own experience. Now that we have it in our possession, we have a great sense of security... In the Pro-Am round on Wednesday, the local weather service told us we could expect rain but no electricity. We had just started the afternoon round and it suddenly became very dark, the detector was giving us warning, even though we could not see any lightning. We decided to suspend play and call all the players off the course. Fifteen minutes later the heavens opened, not only did it rain very hard but there was cloud-to-ground lightning. Fortunately everybody was safely under shelter."

Home

Earle Williams, Assoc. Professor, MIT Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences

"The MIT Weather Radar Group has now been using your optical lightning detector in several thunderstorm field programs... I am pleased to take the opportunity to comment on the usefulness and effectiveness of the detectors based on our experience in these programs... Using the optical detector in conjunction with a sensitive field antenna, it immediately became apparent that the early discharges in developing clouds often produce very small field changes, and your device provided excellent confirmation that the small field changes we observed were indeed associated with optical emission of short duration. Such discharge events may often be missed and therefore not counted as lightning by electric field mills which are often less sensitive lightning detectors. In observations at night under excellent viewing conditions the number of detections with your device compared very favorably with 'eyeball' detection (perhaps the most sensitive lightning detector for nighttime conditions) for storms within about 100km.

In Orlando, comparisons were made between lightning counts with the M-10 detector and the counts from a sophisticated RF interferometer for lightning detection for a daytime thunderstorm. The results suggest that your device was a more sensitive indicator of total lightning by a factor of two or so. Also, the optical detector began to record lightning five minutes before the interferometer and continued for five minutes after the interferometer signals ceased, indicating its high sensitivity... We look forward to continued use of your excellent equipment in future programs."

Home