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Solutions for Surface Meteorological observations

IRAM has developeded an automated information system AIS «MeteoCenter» for gathering data from a Network of Meteorological Stations, for processing and compilation of obser Sations. Gathering of data from a network of observation points is performed in an optimal way for the region depending on the availability of communications.

Information is collected from semi-automatic stations with staff AIMS «Weather» and from fully automatic stations without staff, MAWS Weather Station which is especially effective in remote and sparsely populated areas.

Technology of acquisition and transfer of data from weather stations

Technology of acquisition and transfer of data from weather stations has been developed in cooperation with Experts- Methodists from MGO, specialists from national Hydrometeorological Services of Kazakhstan, Belarus and Moldova and technical experts of the Finnish company Vaisala during the past 20 years.

This technology allows us to dramatically improve the quality of meteorological data by minimizing staff involvement in the process of receiving and transmitting. And also ensures the collection and archiving of the whole volume of messages according to the program of observations for a particular station. Including the coded messages in the formats adopted by NHM Services.

The introduction of IRAM solutions is done on the level of Meteorological Stations and on the level of the Data Colletion Center in the Regional Hydrometeorological Center. Transferring data from AIS «MeteoCenter» to UniMAS is performed in standard formats to standard protocol TCP/IP-socket and requires no modifications of the UniMAS.

The technology involves the collection of data from meteorological stations only through AIS «MeteoCenter». This allows you to fully use all the features of automation and conduct, if necessary, rapid data collection at intervals of 10, 30, 60 minutes. In this case, data transfer and further transmission of messages and data to the Main Data Collection Center is performed in accordance with the regulations, every 3 hours. Additionally collected data is used for meteorological support of the national economy of the region and in situations of natural disasters. All incoming data is stored in open formats and is available to all specialists of Regional Data Collection Center in real time over a local area network. The period for which additional data is collected is regulated by the operator of the Regional Data Collection Center.

AIS «MeteoCenter» is used for data collection from a network of stations with staff (semi-automatic stations) and automatic stations.

AIMS «Weather» is used for automation of the process of data collecting, processing and transmission at each station with staff. AIMS «Weather» can be used with any set of sensors, but IRAM recommends to use certified and reliable sensors (Vaisala)to obtain reliable values of the measured meteorological parameters - pressure, temperature, humidity, wind parameters, etc. In case there is no sensor for a needed parameter, the Observer can add manually the observation by using AIMS «Weather» as interface.

As the signal converter for sensor (logger) we recommend MAWS or other reliable and certified logger.

AIMS «Weather» is installed in a PC and performs all processing and monitoring of meteorological information in line with the station program. All messages are generated and transmitted to the network Mecom without the participation of staff.

In case there is no personal at the station the whole process of collecting, processing and transmission of data can be automated with MAWS automatic station with a set of sensors. In this case, the AIS «MeteoCenter» collects the data from the MAWS station in a standard format. All processing, controlling of data quality and generation of reports is carried out at AIS «MeteoCenter».

Data collection is performed via a dedicated telephone line connection, dial-up telephone line or through the mobile communication standard GSM 900/1800.

Weather station
Weather station

At present this technology is fully used for instance in the modernization of the observation network of the Republic of Moldova. The Network includes one AIS «MeteoCenter» with two channels of data collection and 15 meteorological stations with AIMS «Weather». Starting from 1 January 2009 the network is in operative mode.

Some systems have been installed in Kazakhstan, work continues on upgrading the observation network of the Republic of Kazakhstan.

Project of modernization of the meteorological network in the Republic of Moldova

Project of modernization of surface meteorological network in the Republic of Moldova was developed by the National Hydrometeorological to improve the quality of meteorological information. IRAM specialists have been involved in the project since 2004

The main objective of the project to upgrade the network was to improve the quality of meteorological information, as well as reduce the time for data collection. To solve this problem it was necessary to preserve the existing methods of observation and data transmission scheme in a network of GTS WMO.

The upgrade required the replacement of obsolete measuring devices and the introduction of modern technologies for collecting and processing meteorological ground network in the Republic of Moldova, which consists of 15 meteorological stations.

To obtain reliable values of meteorological variables measured continuously during the day, at all 15 stations were installed sensors from Vaisala (Finland). The package included sensors on the main meteorological variables (temperature, humidity, wind characteristics, atmospheric pressure, surface temperature and soil depths).

The sensors are connected to Vaisala Data Collector QLI50 or MAWS logger, which transmit the data to PC with AIMS «Weather».

AIMS «Weather» is installed in PC, which is processing the results of observations in time and generates a prompt message in the code of the KH-01 KH-21 KH-24 KH-19, CLIMAT, as well as monthly messages (in the format of Russian and WMO Data Collection Center of Hydrometeorologican Information in Obninsk), without the participation of the Observer.

AIMS «Weather» has an option of formation and transfer of all operational messages in code FM 94 BUFR.

Automatic processing of observational data provides reliable information and minimize human errors. The task of the Observer is to insert manually in AIMS «Weather» the data, which is not measured by sensors (for instance visual observations of clouds and the phenomena).

AIMS «Weather» provides a thorough control of the input data (using more than 100 control algorithms) that allows one to correct errors of observations at the time of their appearance and eliminates the rejection of data during their further use.

When the project of AIMS «Weather» was implemented all stations were provided with methodological instructions with a description of the technique of the Observer to perform meteorological observations and operate AIMS «Weather» with a set of sensors and also with traditional instrumentation.

The instructions and documents have also been approved by the Methodical Commission of Main Geophysical Observatory and Central Comission on on Instrumentation and Methods of Observation of Roshydromet.

AIS «MeteoCenter» in the NHMS Republic of Moldova (Chisinau) collects the data automatically at standard times from each of 15 stations equipped with AIMS «Weather».

After collecting and processing the data AIS «MeteoCenter» transmittes the messages to the data switching center UniMAS, which is a network node of GTS WMO. UniMAS transmits the data to the Main Radiometeorological Center of Roshydromet.

Channels for transmission of operational information are also used to secure the transfer of monthly reports.

For communication dedicated phone lines and cellular communications standard GSM 900/1800 are used.

The duration of a communication session to retrieve data from all meteorological stations is less than 8 minutes with the simultaneous use of two channels.

AIS «MeteoCenter» also allows frequent collection of current data in BUFR at intervals of 10, 15, 30, 60 minutes. This allows us to improve the quality of meteorological support, especially when threat or occurrence of dangerous weather phenomena. Time period is set by the operator. You can also collect data from any weather station at any time. This allows the use of the AIS «MeteoCenter» as an important component of highly automated system for early storm warning.

The received data is stored in the archives in an open structure. It is accessible to all specialists of the Center in real time through the local area network.

Experience of the meteorological network in the Republic of Moldova showed that the project of upgrading the network was successful and solved the problems. From 1 January 2009 the modernized network of meteorological stations has been operational.

High quality observations is a result of the automation of measurement process with the help of modern sensors, automation and process control of observational data, as well as fully automated data transfer. Implemented technology allows to minimize the human impact on the quality of the data.

The technology of upgrading the network is optimal because:

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