Weather Station Hardware

This Web site is supplied with environmental data collected by a Davis 6250 Vantage VUE sensor array.

The equipment on the poles include an anemometer and wind direction sensor, a rain gauge, a barometer, and a temperature/humidity sensor. Data is collected and stored in the sensor arrray, transmitted by radio to an indoor console and attached a Davis 6520 data logger, which in turn is connected by USB to an Apple iMac. WeatherCat software is used to update this Web site every five minutes, to send WeatherUnderground 'Rapid Fire' reports every 2.5 seconds, and to report to the Citizen's Weather Observer Program (CWOP) every 10 minutes.

Our first weather sensor was an Ambient Weather WS-2080 purchased in June 2012. While inexpensive (~$100), it proved to be unreliable and was replaced in June of 2013.

The table below shows how frequently the Davis sensors update and their measurement resolution. The WeatherCat software updates every 6 seconds, the same interval that the AJAX script checks for updates...as close to real time as I need.

Update Interval by Sensor
Sensor Reading Updates Resolution
Barometer Barometric Pressure 1 min. .01" Hg
Humidity Inside Humidity 50 sec. 1%
Outside Humidity 50 sec. 1%
Dew Point 10 sec. 1º F
Rain Rainfall Amount 20 sec. .01"
Rain Storm Amount 20 sec.  
Rain Rate 20 sec. .01"
Temperature Inside Temperature 1 min. .1º
Outside Temperature 10 sec. .1º
Heat Index 10 sec. 1º F
Wind Chill 10 sec 1º F
Wind Wind Speed 2.5 sec. 1 mph
Wind Direction 2.5 sec. 22.5º\
Direction of Wind 2.5 sec.

Webcams

Our live outdoor webcam images are streamed via WiFi from two Amcrest 722 IP cameras. The MobileCams, when they're active, are an Apple iPhone 7 Plus and an 2nd gen. iPad Mini running the free Mini WebCam app. All of them feed Evocam software on an iMac, which acts as the web server.

Other web cams you'll find here are provided by the Seashore By The Sea resort (CamZone, which also has cameras at the San Diego zoo), and University of California San Diego (UCSD) High Performance Wireless Research and Education Network (HPWREN)

Other data and information curated here come from around the web. All are used with permission and should be properly attributed, but if we missed something or someone please let us know using the contact form so we can offer an appropriate tip 'o the hat.

Images

The background image (used with permission) is a huge 22 x 14 degree mosaic of the sky centered on RA 20h 0m 27s, Dec 43d 30m 45s in the constellation Cygnus. The mosaic's images were captured and combined by J-P Metsävainio in Oulu, Finland. He points out that the moon, by comparison, is only a half a degree (30 minutes) across, and it would take 1320 full moons to cover the same area as the mosaic. You can see the full image, unspoiled by this Web site here. His passion for deep sky astrophotography is complicated by the fact that, at his far northern location (65°N), there are no dark skies for six months of the year. His images have been published by NASA, National Geographic, LPOD, Sky & Telescope, Universe Today, Daily Mail, Discover Magazine and many others.

The header images and others around the site are pictures I've taken over the years here in Carlsbad or from aircraft I was flying. A gallery of header images is here.

Location

The station is located in Carlsbad, California near 33.11N 117.33W, about a mile inland from the Pacific Ocean.


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About Carlsbad

Carlsbad is on the Southern California Pacific Coast, 35 miles (56 km) north of San Diego and 87 miles (140 km) south of Los Angeles. Thanks to its subtropical-Mediterranean climate the average high and the average low are only about 14 degrees apart. In fact, of all places to have a weather station, this is one of the few where there's not much change. We probably could forecast that it would be hazy until about 10am, then clearing with highs about 70°F, with light winds from the southwest and be right far more often than wrong. For more details about our town go here.

About This Website

This site is based on template design by CarterLake.org originally based on designs by Haran with PHP conversion by Ken True of Saratoga-Weather.org. Kevin Reed at TNET Weather did the work to convert the original Carterlake templates, and his design is used for the common website PHP management.

Mike Challis of Long Beach WA contributed the wind-rose generator and CSS styling help with Mike's templates. Ken True of Saratoga-Weather.org added the AJAX conditions display, dashboard and integration of the TNET Weather common PHP site design.

The awesome Gauges are by Mark Crossley, with help from Ken True, and Col "Uncle Buck". They used Gerrit Grunwald's SteelSeries JavaScript library. Wind Rose is created using RGraph.

Special personal thanks to Ken True, Saratoga-Weather.org, for his knowledge, skill, dedication, patience, and scripts that allow me to proudly share my weather data and other information on the Web.