This site provides useful practical information related to global and national weather observing practices and instruments, including independent equipment reviews.
You will find much of the background in my book The Weather Observer’s Handbook (published by Cambridge University Press), details of which can also be found on this site, together with useful links and downloads.
Author, The Weather Observer’s Handbook
A nation obsessed with the weather? Yes, certainly, but which nation?
Tip of The Day
Weather knows no boundaries. The inherent interest in taking weather observations are greatly enhanced by exchanging and comparing observations with others locally, nationally or internationally.
The majority of AWS owners opt for a third-party AWS software package over the manufacturer’s offering. Five leading packages account for more than four in five of AWSs surveyed in the United States, the United Kingdom and Ireland, although there are also others available. There is no ‘best’ solution, all packages have pros and cons, and the choice is largely one of personal preference. Most of the leading software is available on a ‘try before you buy’ basis, and it is best to ‘try before you buy’.
The most common measurements made are of sunshine duration, using a sunshine recorder, and global solar radiation on a horizontal surface, using a pyranometer. ‘Sunshine’ is defined in terms of the intensity of a perpendicular beam of solar radiation from the solar disk. The intensity of solar radiation is measured in Watts per square metre (W/m2), and daily totals in Megajoules per square metre (MJ/m2). Sunshine durations are measured in hours, or quoted as a percentage of the maximum possible duration.
Never take risks with personal safety when installing any weather sensors at height.
It is advisable to check and test all sensor / datalogger / software and communications thoroughly, over a period of at least a few days, before permanent hardware installation or embarking on any long-term data collection.