Station keeps eye on the sky

COLIN WILLIAMS
Last updated 13:18 06/02/2013
06-UHL-stationcropped.jpg
COLIN WILLIAMS
Up high: Kenneth Dixon and his weather station.

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Upper Hutt Leader

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City weather watchers (or is "spotters" the right term?) can now find out what is happening every which way in Pinehaven.

Resident Ken Dixon has set up a weather station on the roof of his two- storey home. It has been operating a month and so has caught and recorded the recent spell of top class summer weather.

"It started just before Christmas and the word hasn't really gone out," he says.

Set up for under $200 under the auspices of the Pinehaven Progressive Association, it can be accessed through the association's home page and details of its arrival will feature in the next newsletter for the community.

The weather data shown is collected by the station and transmitted wirelessly to the base station which is in turn connected to a Raspberry Pi via the USB interface. This is relayed by pywws software to "Weather Underground" where it is transformed into the information embedded on the PPA site.

Mr Dixon, a software developer, moved to Pinehaven from the lower valley with his wife and young daughter two years ago.

"There is definitely a bit of a micro- climate in Silverstream and here, especially this end of the valley," the Pinehaven Rd resident says.

Losing the Silverstream station had been a bit "sobering" and with Mr Dixon also involved in revamping the PPA's home page it seems a good idea to set up the station.

Comparisons with the station at Trentham's Seddon Rifle Range will be interesting, with the former location more exposed to wind.

See ppa.org.nz/weather.

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- Upper Hutt Leader

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