Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

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Andrew Massie
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Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by Andrew Massie »

Ok, having spoken to Aaron and 03, and given the large amount of enthusiam in Canterbury for severe weather, (yes, I'm talking about YOU, John, Jase, Mike, both Bens, amongst the many others!) that we consider approaching the Christchurch City Council for community non-profit organisation funding for a 'Canterbury weather enthusiasts' club'.

Soo.. expressions of interest here... It may mean 'formal' meetings every year, with chairpersons, treasurers and the like, etc. but I know that the 'Christchurch city choir' get $30,000 a year.

The proposal to the council could include the interest in establishing a PUBLIC ACCESS full time weather radar. I've been seeking advice and have some ideas on what type. We certainly have the collective ability to run and utilise a radar, and by making the data public, it could benefit farmers and the like.

So c'mon people.. lets see how we go.. I'm not proposing we 'rush into' anything, but I feel the potential is there for a great little club for us!

Let me know!


Andrew :wave:
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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by Andrew Massie »

Here's the CCC community funding link, as you can see, $$$ is given away to quite obscure organisations..

http://www.ccc.govt.nz/cityleisure/comm ... index.aspx
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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by melja »

Mmmm not sure the ccc is going to give anywere near the kind money that is needed to setup and run a radar but the club is a good idea _b
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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by Andrew Massie »

melja wrote:Mmmm not sure the ccc is going to give anywere near the kind money that is needed to setup and run a radar but the club is a good idea _b
What if we offered them use of the radar for public viewing on their website? These are some of the ideas that we need to make this work, with a positive attitude!
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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by mikestormchaser »

GREAT idea! be awesome to have our own official club as you might call it re-garding the weather. :)
Id be all in for it :D and the people of Christchurch/ Canterbury will get to know us guys to, even if there not a weather enthusiast.
Would be cool if we had a funding or big fundraiser for like t shirts or something we can wear when we go chasing!
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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by Myself »

Good luck to you all, I hope it gets off the ground.

But the radar idea? You know it costs about $1 million just to get those things built in NZ. Then add in the general maintenance costs and special costs for when it goes down or the comms go down. It's not going to happen, so I would work an angle on something different there.
(Unless you are talking about a less high-tech kind of thing than what MS have?)
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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by Andrew Massie »

No, we've been looking at marine weather radars, with a range of 100kmish..

EDIT: or something like this:
http://www.ewradar.com/E600.html
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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by Lacertae »

Why not just getting the best data from MetService for a start ? We would get the 10-minute updated radar and it would be of a great help !
Otherwise get a small doppler radar mounted on a car like in the States. I'm pretty sure the MetService would be interested too !
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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by Willoughby »

Andrew Massie wrote: EDIT: or something like this:
http://www.ewradar.com/E600.html
COOL!

I've just noticed that the UoA has put their radar back in use at Ardmore!

http://www.weatherradar.co.nz/ardmore/PPI_image.html
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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by melja »

That radar is still around $145000 us dollars :-s so thats close to $200 grand nz a huge amount of money.
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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by 03Stormchaser »

To many haters out there! lol :D

There are many radar options out there and that is just one of them, I've talked with Andrew about this idea at a earlier weather meet and its definitely an idea to pursue, if it works out awesome, if not at least we tried!
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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by NZstorm »

I think the Met Service lightning tracker with regular updates would be very useful, a lot more useful for storm chasing in NZ than radar. Just my thoughts.
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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by Andrew Massie »

Well, this is the idea of putting it in the forum to get positive ideas and suggestions! Obviously we'd vote on the best option working with the council, if we got funding..!
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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by melja »

Why not set up a club and have a members only area here on the forum, then talk to metserive about paying a yearly subscription to get there 7.5min update radar and hourly sat pics and all the other stuff of use but less the stuff of no use to us then see if they will give accsess to club members only for this one off cost.
Even if it costs say $3000-5000 if the club takes members subscriptions at a price to cover its costs and also get a grant then this could work, and lets face it MS use this forum all the time to help them with on the ground obs and the like so im sure that they would be open to somthing like this in the future.
Why pay big dollars for your own radar when MS has much more to offer.
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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by Lacertae »

Only problem with MetService is when the radar is down, like during the t-storm day on Monday ... what's the point of paying for the service you can't get when you need it ?!
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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by 03Stormchaser »

Lacertae wrote:Only problem with MetService is when the radar is down, like during the t-storm day on Monday ... what's the point of paying for the service you can't get when you need it ?!
In totaly agreement, and seeing as the canty radar seems to be a magnet for problems a second radar is a possiblity.
Also like Melja idea, unsure how Metservice would take that though, something to put toward Paul prehaps??
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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by Weetbicks »

Hi guys, count me in. I have no formal background in meteorology, and only a rough knowledge of the basics, but if an appreciation and enthusiasm for weather is a requirement, then I'm keen as mustard :)
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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by Myself »

03Stormchaser wrote:
Lacertae wrote:Only problem with MetService is when the radar is down, like during the t-storm day on Monday ... what's the point of paying for the service you can't get when you need it ?!
In totaly agreement, and seeing as the canty radar seems to be a magnet for problems a second radar is a possiblity.
Also like Melja idea, unsure how Metservice would take that though, something to put toward Paul prehaps??
Lacertae - Metservice pay their million bucks for the radar, how do you think they feel when the images are not available due to breaking down! They suffer more than the casual user, because they have to cancel thunderstorm warnings which presumably are part of the government contract.

I just don't think the second radar idea would fly. The council would just say "there's already a Canterbury radar, we're not funding another one". And what about paying maintenance costs, since even the model mentioned above is going to break at some point! Also I don't think it's fair to say the current radar is a "magnet for problems". We don't really know why they go down, is it technical or communications outages?

I would focus on getting the deal with MS that provides 8 minute radar images. Don't know how much it would cost but it would be cheaper than a new radar!

Another thing to do would be a dedicated PC that runs a mesoscale model for the Canterbury area. You'd probably have to base it off GFS, but this is commonly done all over the world now. I think WRF is the current model, as opposed to the outdated MM5.
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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by NZ Thunderstorm Soc »

I went to the toilet today :crazy:
Hey! How about someone come up with a methane radar :lol:
Then we could detect methane gas whereabouts and gid rid of it whatsoever and there would be no globalwarming :D

....sorry, getting abit off subject here [-X

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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by Nev »

Myself wrote:Metservice pay their million bucks for the radar...
Slightly OT but, I think MetService's new radars actually cost about $3 million each, with funding provided by the Ministry of Transport.
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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by Manukau heads obs »

if yours is slight OT, then what catergory does John's post belong too?
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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by zl4plm »

hi guys

interesting info ....

As someone with a back ground in electronics and radio, you can be sure that if the weather service got an interruption to their radar then you won't find yours any the more reliable.

Thats not to detract from the idea but .....

commercials sites are well protected against extreme weather such as lightning ... and a single near miss can wipe out a lot of kit .... it does not even need to be "that" close.

I lost two preamps to two receivers on monday .... one to my APT kit and the other on VHF

We did not get that close a strike .. plenty of C-C but nothing on the ground that I could see ... although it looked like hell was boiling over from my view to the SW ,,,, I am only a few km to Kirwee on the main west coast road (73) at West Melton.

So .... trying a DIY radar while an interesting project is not going to produce the results your looking for.

Doppler radars that the NSSL have on their trucks cost a mild fortune ..... and the processing behind them is huge.

What I would like to see is access to the near real time data from the met service.

This is much more of a possibility.... given a closed grup so the data is not rebroadcast .. their main issues.

for loss of comemrcial reasons

what interets me is that in Europe this data is available on line opennly ... to allow users to see what extreme weather is local ... and in EU we do get some nasty stuff .... 3cms hail is rgeular ... tryz it when it gets to tennis ball size!

I also have an interest in radio reflectivity from Tstorms for communication purposes ... in the amateur radio bands.

I have also been investigating access into the hi res geo sats ... something that is also prevailant in EU but not so easy here.

I have two systems running here ... APT from VHF

www.zl4plm.no-ip.org

and a new HRPT system (1km res 5 spectral bands) from the NOAA 15 - 19 sats but this is not real time as I need to receive and process the images.

all in all .. much better to press for access to the metservice for access.

just my 50c worth :)

rgds

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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by tgsnoopy »

Has anyone actually considering asking Metservice for a contact they can talk to if extreme weather is around and you are chasing? Maybe a reciprocal agreement may be practical where they help you find the best action during the event and you provide them with appropriate feedback?

I know after the severe thunderstorm in the Kaimais earlier this year they were pleased to see the photographs showing the hail etc.

Just a thought?
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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by Tornado Tim »

I asked, but i got told to contact another guy as the person representing metconnect couldn't be contacted.
The person responding to my email said it costs approx $75 +gst and plus a setup fee for additional things you want.
I will contact the guy who he referred me on to.
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Re: Expressions of interest - 'Official' Canterbury weather club

Unread post by Andrew Massie »

Well, I'm not letting go of the radar idea yet, one of my colleagues is a avionics technician who specialises in doppler weather radar and he says it can be done at a reasonable price. I also work with a number of electronic technicians, power technicians and software engineers who can help this get off the ground.
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