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It’s been a busy and productive past week at Columbia Weather. Yesterday, Vaisala's Product Line Manager Mikko Krapu and R&D Project Manager Hannu Valo all the way from Finland visited the office to discuss the latest developments in meteorological technology.
Our remote software development team Brian and Gilbert also met with us last weekend from Idaho and joined us for our 25th Anniversary Dinner.
We stay committed to improving and providing high quality weather monitoring equipment to meet the needs of our customers, and we couldn’t do it without a fantastic team of partners who help make it all happen!
Our updated Weather MicroServer is a powerful communication device and data logger that includes a web browser user interface with real-time dashboards, configuration, and data export.
The new MicroServer features:
Backward-compatible and interfacing with all CWS weather station models, the Cloud Weather Server and Weather Monitor App are free to Weather MicroServer customers.
This month CWS is celebrating a milestone — Electronics Technician Vincent Iubatti (pronounced You-bahtee) has worked with us for 10 years! Vincent juggles technical support, product testing, and repairs with aplomb.
Prior to coming to Columbia Weather, Vincent completed his AS specialty degree in Electronic Engineering Technology at Portland Community College, and had several years of experience in customer service, as well as a Bachelor of Science degree from Wilmington University in Delaware. We are fortunate to have him as a member of the CWS team!
Among their efforts to improve plant efficiency and maintenance, Bloomington-Normal Water Reclamation District purchased five Orion™ Weather Stations to monitor on-site conditions at the district’s two water treatment sites.
“In the past we would manually record and enter weather data,” Director of Operations Jake Callahan explained. “We first learned about Columbia Weather Systems in a featured article in one of the Operator magazines. This is where we originally learned about the equipment and its capability of interfacing with SCADA systems. We wanted to have weather data trended and monitored on the District’s SCADA system for information purposes to assist with data analysis and anticipating the impact a rain event would have on flows with real time data.”
Jake continued, “The District’s service area covers two watersheds. We have two treatment plants that we own, operate, and maintain which are about 15 miles apart. Both treatment plants have weather stations installed in addition to two of our pump stations.
"With the Columbia Weather Systems (equipment), we were able to automate the weather data interface and data entry into our data management software. The data is used for reporting to the regulatory Agency as they now look for information on storm duration, intensity and total precipitation.
"Having the weather data fully integrated and trended on the District’s SCADA system has greatly simplified the reporting requirement aspect of managing weather data . . . Once the first weather station was configured the others were able to be integrated fairly easily.”
Weather Master™ software displays wind speed and barometric pressure at Florida’s Big Coppitt Key as Hurricane Ian moved north to make landfall at Fort Meyers on Wednesday. Data is gathered from an Orion Weather Station. Our thoughts are with those affected by this devastating storm.
We enjoyed a visit from Asante Safety President Nakarai Toyoaki all the way from Japan last week! A former visiting professor of Environment and Information Sciences at Yokohama National University, he and his team utilized data from a Magellan MX™ Portable Weather Station with ALOHA software for plume modeling.
Mr. Toyoaki is developing weather station options for local government public safety applications. Thank you for the visit and the beautiful prints!
Our beloved Office Manager Debbie Siple Taylor has worn many hats since beginning work at a fledgling Columbia Weather Systems 25 years ago this month.
From your first inquiry to purchase payment, you will get to know her cheerful, vivacious personality -- unless your account is past due! Over the years she has been responsible for everything from accounts and bookkeeping to HR and shipping logistics and many things in between.
One of her greatest contributions is to employee morale, being confidante and cheerleader to everyone on our team, and bringing games and songs to our monthly celebration lunches.
We're lucky to have her!
“During my research, I found Columbia Weather Systems offered detailed yet simple information about their Weather Monitoring solutions.” Christopher Gayle, Environmental Specialist at Kingston Freeport Terminal Limited, gave us insight to how recently installed Capricorn FLX™ Weather Stations are an important element of operations at the terminal.
Situated at one of the world’s largest natural harbors, Kingston Freeport Terminal Limited operates as the largest container handling facility in the Caribbean, facilitating the import and export of goods to and from Jamaica with over 1,000 containers delivered weekly according to their website.
Monitoring on-site meteorological parameters is valuable on several levels.
Nader Khoury started at Columbia Weather Systems 25 year ago, spinning a new company from the weather station division of Hinds Instruments, Inc. Capricorn, the reliable weather station, had been in production since 1981. While we have added additional models, the Capricorn FLX represents the fourth generation of our flagship Capricorn line of modular weather stations.
Nader came to CWS with a degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering from Oregon State University and 10 years of experience in test and measurement technology. With his leadership, Columbia Weather Systems has become one of the most recognized brands in the industry.
Some of our customers really take weather monitoring to the next level! In this video, WKRG in Mobile, Alabama debuts The Beast, their new mobile weather lab with the Pulsar Weather Station:
“From hurricanes to tornadoes to flash floods, it’s safe to say the Gulf Coast has some of the wildest, most active weather in the country. Reporting on these life changing weather events is top priority for WKRG News 5.”
Take a look at this “Storm Center on Wheels”! Built by LDV for Delmarva Power in Delaware, this Mobile Command Vehicle is equipped with a Magellan MX500 Weather Station and a Panel Mount Weather Display.
According to a CBS Philly article, “Delmarva says crews have been improving the electrical grid to provide safe and reliable service. State and county emergency management officials say now is the time to prepare for severe weather.”
The vehicle has also been dispatched to storm-hit areas in the wakes of Hurricanes Irma and Dorian.
Photos courtesy of LDV Inc.
We have a new application feature! Umatilla Electric Cooperative is an electric utility company that serves a large portion of the Columbia Basin and Blue Mountain country in Northeastern Oregon.
Electric System Engineer Ryan Young recently gave us some insight to how they use weather data from an Orion Weather Station for vital decision-making at the utility. Learn more at the link below:
“We use our (Orion) weather station mainly for wind direction and speed which in return initiates plant odor neutralizer pumps to kick on via SCADA PLC commands. These pumps mix water and perfume and spray a fine mist to keep odors down at the waste water treatment facility. We also calculate rain events and forecast how much we may need to pump final effluent for a given day . . . no issues with the station, works good!”
Thanks to Mike Hovey of the Union Sanitary District for sharing these photos with us! Union Sanitary District is an award-winning wastewater treatment facility that services a population of over 356,000 in the California Bay Area.
The plant utilizes an Orion™ Weather Station, which is ideal for high-precision weather monitoring and can measure ultrasonic wind speed and direction, rain, temperature, humidity, and barometric pressure.
A quick behind-the-scenes video clip as we continue working hard for our customers! Thanks for keeping us busy!
The Riverside County Sheriff Department recently received their new state-of-the-art mobile command post! Built by LDV, Inc., the vehicle features a Magellan MX500™ Weather Station with Weather Master™software and the Weather Display Console.
Sheriff Bianco notes: "Mobile command posts are a must for critical incidents, natural disasters, and some crime scenes . . . Today we took delivery of our first (of three) state of the art Mobile Command Post. This thing is amazing. It is a self contained office, conference room, computer center, cellular/wi-fi, and dispatch center.
"Our Sheriff’s Emergency Response Team (SERT) personnel worked closely with the manufacturer to design and equip this from the ground up making it one of the most advanced and capable vehicles in the industry."
The Magellan MX Weather Station line is particularly suited for vehicle and portable applications requiring real-time met data on the go, such as mobile weather labs, incident command centers, and hazmat apparatus.
Trusted by government agencies and industry leaders around the globe, customers include GM, Cummins, Kinder Morgan, and General Electric.
Funded by a NASA STEM grant, Vincennes University in Indiana purchased a Capricorn FLX™ Weather Station with the Weather MicroServer™ and Weather Master™ software. Assistant Professor of Geoscience Andrew Smith recently shared how the weather station has benefited multiple departments at the university:
“Data from the station is utilized by several departments and classes on campus. I use the data in my Intro to Weather and Climate and Earth Science courses . . . at least one agriculture class uses the data and surveying classes over in technology use the atmospheric pressure data so they have the most accurate information for surveying projects on campus.
“I would absolutely recommend this station. Installation was pretty straightforward and it has been reliable thus far. I appreciate the flexibility it offers in terms of data that can be displayed and downloaded. Columbia technical support was very prompt and helpful when I reached out with a question. Plus, it looks really cool on top of our building!”
Orion AQM™ Air Quality Monitoring systems provide immediate, on-site data for analysis, compliance, and decision-making. All three models include the basic meteorological parameters of temperature, humidity, and barometric pressure.
Orion AQM-PM model includes Particulate Matter PM2.5 and PM10, and the Orion AQM-Gas measures common gaseous pollutants nitrogen dioxide, nitrogen monoxide, carbon monoxide, and ozone.
Our recently updated brochure and presentation can be found at the link below.
KCNC – CBS4 station in Denver, CO utilizes Pulsar™ Weather Stations with MicroServers and WeatherMaster™ Software for both their Mobile Weather Lab and their fixed-base rooftop equipment.
“To my pleasant surprise the device was rock solid reliable and comes online very quickly. In our weatherlab your weather stations are used for ‘show and tell’ and adds to the visual storytelling for the viewer."
CWS tech Vincent has done some recent work to customize their WeatherMaster software with the CBS logo as well as screen size to better fit their monitor.
Extreme summer weather conditions, frequent power disruptions due to aging infrastructure, and distance from the main power grid put the Chemehuevi Tribe community near Lake Havasu, Arizona community at risk.
To mitigate this issue, a microgrid system was installed at the Community Center, which serves as an emergency response cooling center during power disruptions. The microgrid integrates the Solar 2 Capricorn FLX Weather Station with solar panels, battery storage, advanced data analytics, and smart energy management controls.
Alfredo Martinez-Morales, Managing Director of the Southern California Research Initiative for Solar Energy, said the weather station “helps monitor some of the data that is important for us to perform efficiency calculations in terms of solar prediction… This project has the dual benefit of providing an environmentally friendly power system for the tribe while allowing researchers to study a system that could become a model for people in California and elsewhere.”
The Imperial Irrigation District in Southern California installed an Orion™ Weather Station at a remote substation that is regularly impacted by wind storms, flash floods, and extreme summer temperatures.
Bethany visited the site on a recent trip and spoke with IID Communications & Control Technician Mizael Huereque, who explained how engineers utilize on-site weather data for critical substation operations. These reasons include:
➡️ Preparing to supply power from secondary substations to sustain increased load by monitoring high temperatures in the summer months.
➡️ Anticipating and preparing for fallen trees and power lines by monitoring wind speeds during storms.
➡️ Adjusting transmission line ratings for efficiency and equipment damage mitigation by factoring temperature, wind speed, and solar radiation data.