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New Weather Station in Medford:
Gathering Data for Wind Energy Assessment

The Medford Clean Energy Committee has installed a permanent weather station on top of one of the Hormel Stadium light towers in Medford, MA. The height of the instrumentation is approximately 110 feet above ground. It is placed at that height to gather wind data for a possible future deployment of a wind turbine.

The weather station hardware is a Davis Vantage Pro2 wireless system, which is a well-regarded weather system that has certified data accuracy according to the National Institute of Standards and Technology. It operates by solar power and radio telemetry of the data from the top of the Hormel Light tower to a receiver and transmitter placed near a window in the McGlynn School facing the Hormel Stadium. This equipment then retransmits the signal to an inner secure office where the weather console is located. The console is connected to a dedicated computer system that allows the data to be transmitted via the Internet.

The weather variables that are measured by the Davis system are wind direction, wind speed, temperature, relative humidity (and dewpoint), and rainfall. Rainfall is measured in increments of 0.01 inch.

Here are a few ways in which you can access the data. The weather station code is KMAMEDFO3 on the Weather Underground system, and CW6581 on the Citizen Weather Observer Program system.
http://www.wunderground.com/weatherstation/WXDailyHistory.asp?ID=KMAMEDFO3 will allow you to view the current weather, updated in "rapid fire" mode every 2.5 seconds, and also to look at 5-minute averages of weather data on the current day as well as other specific days. The data can be archived in a comma-delimited file format.

http://www.wunderground.com/stationmaps/gmap.asp?zip=02155&magic=1&wmo=99999 gives you a map of weather data from personal weather stations (and airport stations) in eastern MA (see figure above)
http://www.findu.com/cgi-bin/wxpage.cgi?call=CW6581 reports the same data in a different form. The data is being sent to the Citizen Weather Observer Program (CWOP), which is a private-public partnership with the goal to make these data available for weather services and homeland security. Every 15 minutes, the data are sent from the findu.com server to the NOAA MADIS program to become part of the NOAA mesonet data set. The data are checked for quality and then redistributed to users.

 

For additional information, contact Bob Paine at ENSR Corporation in Westford, MA
(phone: 978-589-3164, e-mail: bpaine@ensr.aecom.com)

The Hormel weather station equipment is located at the top of a lighting tower at Hormel stadium, located near the McGlynn School and intersection of I-93 and Rt 16.



A classic cold frontal passage after 6 PM on October 20, 2006 shows up well on the Weather Underground display.

 



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Kids Corner

Check out some Fun Facts about Medford and Clean Energy - click here.

Are you a middle school student? We're working to get new equipment for the technology labs- has your household signed up yet? - click here.

Check out the pictures from the last field trip to the Hull Wind Turbine!! - click here.