The better you can understand a fake storm, the easier it is to predict a real one. No. It appears on radar as a clockwise, hook-shaped extension that branches off from the right rear of a supercell thunderstorm. In other words, it can measure how fast rain or hail is moving toward or away from the radar. Doppler radar can tell meteorologists if conditions within a storm are favorable for tornadoes—such as strong winds and cloud rotation—but it can't actually see a tornado. You can see the weather radar on just about any weather app for your phone. That's because a hook echo is an "x marks the spot" indication of favorable locations for tornado development. Instead of simply detecting precipitation and motion like any doppler radar, they can better detect rain vs. snow vs. hail vs. debris from a tornado. If you look in the hook of the supercell (bottom left) you can see a circle of blue amidst a bunch of reds and oranges. When storm chasers see this pattern on radar, they can expect to have a successful chase day. You can, however, see the thunderstorms in a satellite image. Doppler radar can see not only the precipitation in a thunderstorm (through its ability to reflect microwave energy, or reflectivity), but motion of the precipitation along the radar beam. Can you see a tornado using Doppler radar? Tornadoes release built-up pressure in the atmosphere. Once again, if you match up the arrows I've drawn showing the rotation to the colors, you can see that there's green on the side where the air is blowing toward the radar and red where the air is blowing away from the radar. You can actually see where the radar is located in this image--in the middle of that black circle on the lower right side. Doppler Radar . It matches up very well. This is commonly referred to as a tornado debris signature (TDS). Tornadoes descend from thunderstorms, and so cannot be seen from above. This gives meteorologists a high degree of confidence that a damaging tornado is on the ground, and is especially helpful at night when tornadoes are difficult to see with the human eye. Who were the first people to successfully forecast a tornado? You can't. This area of the blue is the radar picking up an area of very low correlation coefficient. Three crazy ways to prevent tornadoes. Dual-polarization radar technology, installed on NWS radars, can detect the presence of random shaped and sized targets like leaves, insulation or other debris.