The Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety’s (IBHS) hail field study team is no stranger to using new technology to better understand the characteristics of damaging hail.
As 3D scanning abilities evolve and increase, IBHS is adopting this technology for the purpose of learning how and why hail causes property damage and how to prevent that damage. After testing 3D scanning abilities in the field last year, the IBHS hail field study team was able to fully take advantage of the tool this year and scan an astonishing 42 hailstones in parts of north Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas.
“Severe weather in the Great Plains states continues to be active this year and cause significant damage to homes and businesses throughout the region,” said Ian Giammanco, PhD, IBHS lead research meteorologist. “We are very enthusiastic about expanding our field study this year to increase the use of 3D laser scanning of hailstones to help understand hail aerodynamics and how hailstone shapes may affect damage.”
The IBHS hail field study is in its fifth year of a multi-year, major field research effort to study hailstorms with the goal of reducing property losses and improving weather forecast models and radar detection of hail.
Data collected in the field will be used to accurately recreate hailstones at the IBHS Research Center for further studies. In particular, the 3D scans collected will later help IBHS build molds used to create hailstones that reflect what the team has observed in the field.
In addition, data collected in the field will be used to accurately recreate hailstones at the IBHS Research Center for further studies. The 3D scans collected will help IBHS build molds used to create hailstones that reflect what the team has been able to find in the field. In fact, more than 10 billion data points on a single hailstone scanned will allow IBHS to create a hailstone that is almost identical to what was found in the field.