Author Topic: Any Weather Stations Suited for Arctic Coditions?  (Read 744 times)

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Offline Gandalf Wite

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Any Weather Stations Suited for Arctic Coditions?
« on: July 01, 2024, 06:01:31 PM »
I have a fairly simple question:  What weather station (or even just weather station components) would you recommend for someone like myself who lives in central Alaska.  As such, ALL solar-powered weather stations are useless in winter, temperature sensor must go below -40 (last winter we had below -50F) and any temperature sensor must have AC provided power whether USB or otherwise because batteries don't work reliably below -20F and especially not -40F.

This eliminates 99% of all weather stations and even just outdoor thermometers.  Honestly at this point I would be quite happy to just find a digital outdoor thermometer that goes below -40F and also has backup AC power.  I can find a couple thermometers that have a range to -58F, but they only have batteries so won't actually work at those temperatures.

The only thing I found that could possibly work is, ironically enough, a stainless steel ground probe 6470 from Davis.  However trying to figure out what is needed to use said probe is not so simple...some kind of lawn moisture monitoring box?  Seems bizarre, but ok - maybe in some tropical climates the lawn temperature and moisture matters?  Up here grass either grows, or is frozen.  No mystery there.  Anyway, I'm not sure if I need the probe, the moisture/soil temp box, some sort of relay box and a monitor, or if the probe can only be used with a bonafide "weather station".  I think all other temperature sensors from ecowitt and ambien and such only go to -40F.

I could just capitulate and get a weather station that only works to -40F, but at that point pretty much the most important weather datum to me would be lost - namely getting accurate temperature readings.  I've tried the circular spring-based analog thermometers that can be seen far enough to be placed where the temperature is not changed by the house, but these are horrendously inaccurate.  Often off by 10 degrees or more, and the needle is prone to get stuck.  I placed other analog thermometers on the porch, but these get heated by the heat-loss from the house in the winter so those are also completely inaccurate.  Along the same lines, I have the feeling that even analog thermometers are not made the way they used to be.  They also seem to vary by 10 degrees from one to the next, and without a shroud they are obviously extremely inaccurate which makes it even more inconvenient to try to get a reading.

Anyway, you can see my conundrum, and any help/insight would be greatly appreciated.  I mean surely Someone has invented a device that can record and transmit the temperature in arctic conditions... it's not THAT cold - not like Antarctic or polar conditions.

Addendum:
Anemometer is not needed at all really.  The property is surrounded by tall trees, so wind would just a curiosity item for "in situ" comparisons to the actual wind speeds.
« Last Edit: July 02, 2024, 10:26:29 AM by saratogaWX »


Offline Gandalf Wite

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Re: Any Weather Stations Suited for Artict Coditions?
« Reply #2 on: July 01, 2024, 06:33:03 PM »
That looks like a solid weather station albeit quite pricey considering it does not include a base station so so it would end up well above $1000.

From what I can tell it's solar powered so absolutely won't work.  We are at 64degrees N so even under ideal conditions the prerequisite of <60degrees N is not met. 

Online Mattk

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Re: Any Weather Stations Suited for Artict Coditions?
« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2024, 06:43:23 PM »
First up you will be dealing mostly with a cabled system considering the power requirements. A Lufft WS-300 (Temp/RH/Pressure) range is -50C (~ -60F) 24VDC essentially requiring mains AC.

The Ventus-X-UMB is an ultrasonic eXtreme anemometer (Aluminium) is made for ice conditions, operates down to -40C (-40F) with Wind speed/Pressure and Virtual Temp (operating range -50C) accuracy of +/-2C   

Offline CW2274

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Re: Any Weather Stations Suited for Artict Coditions?
« Reply #4 on: July 01, 2024, 06:47:00 PM »
it would end up well above $1000.
You're in a unique situation, so, most likely, you're gonna have to drop significant change in some form of fashion of what you may be able to find. You think this is pricey, I suggest you try RM Young or Campbell Scientific. They may have what you're looking for, but guaranteed not cheap. 

Offline Gandalf Wite

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Re: Any Weather Stations Suited for Artict Coditions?
« Reply #5 on: July 01, 2024, 06:48:01 PM »
I wonder if I could wire in an AC powered DC power source where the solar panals input the power to the system.  No lightning in winter so no issues with that and I would unplug it once the 4 darkest (and coldest) months are over.  I am still extremely skeptical that any battery-system would work at -40F and if so not very long. 

Also, does anybody know if a standard outdoor ethernet switch would work with this as compared to the company's proprietary $800 unit:
https://www.circuitsolar.com/product/rainwise-ip-100-network-interface/

I am trying to see if I could get this system for around $1000, but if I need another 400-800 dollar unit that it completely out of the question.
« Last Edit: July 01, 2024, 06:57:33 PM by Gandalf Wite »

Offline CW2274

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Re: Any Weather Stations Suited for Artict Coditions?
« Reply #6 on: July 01, 2024, 06:50:32 PM »
I am trying to see if I could get this system for around $1000, but if I need another 400-800 dollar unit that it completely out of the question.
You may very well be out of luck unless you're able to "piece together" something on your own.

Offline Gandalf Wite

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Re: Any Weather Stations Suited for Artict Coditions?
« Reply #7 on: July 01, 2024, 06:56:54 PM »
Yes, if anyone has any experience regarding piecing together weather station components especially splicing in power or piecing together components from Davis as mentioned in my original question, that might be the route I have to go. 

Online Mattk

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Re: Any Weather Stations Suited for Artict Coditions?
« Reply #8 on: July 01, 2024, 08:01:17 PM »
Yes, if anyone has any experience regarding piecing together weather station components especially splicing in power or piecing together components from Davis as mentioned in my original question, that might be the route I have to go.

Sure lots of things can be spliced together but that's not going to happen with your budget for those conditions.

As an aside what is the comms/internet connection to the outside world? Is this cabled/mobile/satellite or simply a local data requirement?

Offline vinceskahan

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Re: Any Weather Stations Suited for Artict Coditions?
« Reply #9 on: July 01, 2024, 08:10:49 PM »
What weather station (or even just weather station components) would you recommend for someone like myself who lives in central Alaska.

I'd suggest you try to contact somebody at Univ of Alaska Fairbanks - one starting point link might be https://www.gi.alaska.edu/monitors/aurora-forecast which has some links at the bottom of the page.   There has to be somebody on the meteological side of the university up there who would be nice enough to give you some pointers.

Follow up here if you get any answers !!!
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Offline TheBushPilot

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Re: Any Weather Stations Suited for Artict Coditions?
« Reply #10 on: July 01, 2024, 08:29:26 PM »
Gandalf Wite,

I'd recommend putting together a system of your own, as you should be able to spec out something significantly better than any "professional grade" station you could buy off the shelf. And significantly lower in price than any similarly spec'd commercial system. I've done this myself and don't see why someone legitimately needing the robust instrumentation couldn't do so as well.

Yes, if anyone has any experience regarding piecing together weather station components especially splicing in power or piecing together components from Davis as mentioned in my original question, that might be the route I have to go. 

I don't know your budget but for what you need probably target at most in the ~$1500 ballpark. That gets you a very robust and long lasting accurate "temperature monitoring system" for the climate you experience.

For standardizations sake, let's say you're measuring temperature and dew point. You can pick up a Campbell Scientific data logger (recommend a CR23X due to expansion and overall greater capabilities) for $150, R. M. Young temperature and relative humidity probe for $80 to $150 (-50 to +50C) and R. M. Young RTD probe for $200 new (-50 to +50C). Get a new CSI enclosure for $250 or so, and additional IoT/power equipment for another $150. That gives you enough room for either wired or wireless communications. I am going to assume you will have AC power given your location in Alaska with lacking solar availability. If that's the case then you could pick up an R. M. Young 43408 fan aspirated radiation shield for the Young RTD probe to improve response time. Otherwise, you can use two collocated 41003 multi-plate radiation shields which are $146 each.

I don't know what your display requirements are but one can easily set up an Arduino to push data to a web server with graphs and numeric readout etc. and or put together a monitor display program on a desktop computer that pulls data from that station in real time at no cost. Or do one or the other.

I'd be more than willing to help put something together for you if that's the route you want to go. Hopefully this gives some helpful insight. [tup]


Cheers
« Last Edit: July 01, 2024, 08:34:24 PM by TheBushPilot »
Met Instruments Project
CHAD ASOS ID TRX001:
Camp. Sci. CR1000 Logger
R. M. Young 05103L 3M WS/WD
Apogee Inst. ST-110 2M Fast T
R. M. Young 43408 FARS
Vaisala HMT337 2M Td/Ref T
R. M. Young 41003 Gill (x2)
Setra  Sys. 270 StPr (x3)
R. M. Young 52202 Precip
Eppley Lab PSP 3M Solar Rad
PUSR USR-DR404
QuinLED-ESP32
Camp. Sci. CM110
------------------------
180 watt PV
300 Ah LiFePO4 Bank
------------------------
R. M. Young 26700

Offline CW2274

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Re: Any Weather Stations Suited for Artict Coditions?
« Reply #11 on: July 01, 2024, 08:54:12 PM »
Gandalf Wite,

I'd recommend putting together a system of your own, as you should be able to spec out something significantly better than any "professional grade" station you could buy off the shelf. And significantly lower in price than any similarly spec'd commercial system. I've done this myself and don't see why someone legitimately needing the robust instrumentation couldn't do so as well.

Yes, if anyone has any experience regarding piecing together weather station components especially splicing in power or piecing together components from Davis as mentioned in my original question, that might be the route I have to go. 
I'd be more than willing to help put something together for you if that's the route you want to go. Hopefully this gives some helpful insight. [tup]
OP, I'd jump on this gentleman's offer in a heartbeat. He knows his stuff about this better than anyone on this board.

Online Mattk

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Re: Any Weather Stations Suited for Artict Coditions?
« Reply #12 on: July 01, 2024, 09:17:07 PM »
In hindsight this query has probably been directed to the wrong place? Requiring only temperature then would be directing this towards an industrial and/or scientific type provider of refrigeration monitoring equipment for a simple rugged indoor/outdoor temperature display with a logging capability (if required?).   

Offline Gandalf Wite

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Re: Any Weather Stations Suited for Artict Coditions?
« Reply #13 on: July 01, 2024, 10:54:27 PM »
I appreciate all the input.

While I'm certainly tempted to do what TheBushPilot suggests - think my spouse would balk at that price range.

Yes, I have AC power, Cable internet, etc.  I'm not in the middle of the Bush, so I apologize if I gave that impression,
so I don't have the needs of a remote sensing site. 

I was hoping to find a weather station that would work in our climate, and it's only the apparent lack of availability of such a product that appears to be driving me to the extreme of only having a temperature data logger.

I've been doing more research, and I think I found a workable solution for my needs. 
It's PEET Bros Ultimeter.  It uses a simple Cat6 cable connection to the base station so I can make a cable the length I need, temperature range is -55 to 150F, humidity, basic wind speed (again I'm sheltered by trees), and air pressure.  I'll try it and report back.  This way I don't have to get a degree in electrical engineering and programming just to get some basic weather data.  Or so I think.  I may live to regret my decision, but it will certainly contribute to the domestic peace, and I can stomach the loss if I am mistaken.   :lol:

Online Mattk

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Re: Any Weather Stations Suited for Artict Coditions?
« Reply #14 on: July 01, 2024, 11:49:22 PM »
Just to clarify it is not an apparent lack of a product or lack of availability, it is a lack of budget and of course the disposition of the spouse :) which is the restricting factor in this project. Weather systems are certainly available to meet your rather "warm environment" compared to other parts of the world, like right now Amundsen-Scott in Antarctica wind speed 11 knots, temp is touching -60C (-76.0F) with a wind chill of -81.1C (-113.9F) and still got a long way to go to reach the coldest ever recorded, oh yeah the gear is certainly available  [tup]   
« Last Edit: July 01, 2024, 11:52:20 PM by Mattk »

Offline TheBushPilot

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Re: Any Weather Stations Suited for Artict Coditions?
« Reply #15 on: July 02, 2024, 10:57:21 AM »
I appreciate all the input.

While I'm certainly tempted to do what TheBushPilot suggests - think my spouse would balk at that price range.

Yes, I have AC power, Cable internet, etc.  I'm not in the middle of the Bush, so I apologize if I gave that impression,
so I don't have the needs of a remote sensing site. 

I was hoping to find a weather station that would work in our climate, and it's only the apparent lack of availability of such a product that appears to be driving me to the extreme of only having a temperature data logger.

I've been doing more research, and I think I found a workable solution for my needs. 
It's PEET Bros Ultimeter.  It uses a simple Cat6 cable connection to the base station so I can make a cable the length I need, temperature range is -55 to 150F, humidity, basic wind speed (again I'm sheltered by trees), and air pressure.  I'll try it and report back.  This way I don't have to get a degree in electrical engineering and programming just to get some basic weather data.  Or so I think.  I may live to regret my decision, but it will certainly contribute to the domestic peace, and I can stomach the loss if I am mistaken.   :lol:

I had a Peet Bros Ultimeter 800 for 3 years and absolutely loved it, you won't regret getting one. Peet Bros is probably one of the only companies I would recommend in the "professional" market. They have some of the best quality and price for performance, I'd argue better than Davis even. ;)

Best of luck and keep us posted with your install. :grin:


Cheers
Met Instruments Project
CHAD ASOS ID TRX001:
Camp. Sci. CR1000 Logger
R. M. Young 05103L 3M WS/WD
Apogee Inst. ST-110 2M Fast T
R. M. Young 43408 FARS
Vaisala HMT337 2M Td/Ref T
R. M. Young 41003 Gill (x2)
Setra  Sys. 270 StPr (x3)
R. M. Young 52202 Precip
Eppley Lab PSP 3M Solar Rad
PUSR USR-DR404
QuinLED-ESP32
Camp. Sci. CM110
------------------------
180 watt PV
300 Ah LiFePO4 Bank
------------------------
R. M. Young 26700

Offline Gandalf Wite

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Re: Any Weather Stations Suited for Artict Coditions?
« Reply #16 on: July 02, 2024, 12:28:08 PM »
I appreciate all the input.

While I'm certainly tempted to do what TheBushPilot suggests - think my spouse would balk at that price range.

Yes, I have AC power, Cable internet, etc.  I'm not in the middle of the Bush, so I apologize if I gave that impression,
so I don't have the needs of a remote sensing site. 

I was hoping to find a weather station that would work in our climate, and it's only the apparent lack of availability of such a product that appears to be driving me to the extreme of only having a temperature data logger.

I've been doing more research, and I think I found a workable solution for my needs. 
It's PEET Bros Ultimeter.  It uses a simple Cat6 cable connection to the base station so I can make a cable the length I need, temperature range is -55 to 150F, humidity, basic wind speed (again I'm sheltered by trees), and air pressure.  I'll try it and report back.  This way I don't have to get a degree in electrical engineering and programming just to get some basic weather data.  Or so I think.  I may live to regret my decision, but it will certainly contribute to the domestic peace, and I can stomach the loss if I am mistaken.   :lol:

I had a Peet Bros Ultimeter 800 for 3 years and absolutely loved it, you won't regret getting one. Peet Bros is probably one of the only companies I would recommend in the "professional" market. They have some of the best quality and price for performance, I'd argue better than Davis even. ;)

Best of luck and keep us posted with your install. :grin:


Cheers

 [tup] That's great to hear, thanks!  Can you verify whether the Peet Bros system uses regular Cat6 cable?  I'm assuming it does since they mention "8-strand plugs" and show a standard RJ45 plug, but realize it could be some sort of proprietary crossover or such.  I can make my own cables so even a crossover system wouldn't be an issue as long as it's obvious.

Also, assuming it is standard Cat6, do you know if I can simply plug it into my existing outside cameras POE switch and address it via an IP address or such, or does it have to have a dedicated ethernet cable into the house?  Just wondering if I need to prepare by adding a second ethernet line next to the one already going through my house wall or if I can combine the signals and sort it out inside.

I did find a used Peet Bros 100 and am starting out with that since I wasn't completely sure if it will work for our climate, but if everything works without issue throughout the next winter, then I will probably look to upgrade to the 800 or the 2100.  I've learned the hard way not to assume things will work in AK.   ;)

Online Mattk

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Re: Any Weather Stations Suited for Arctic Coditions?
« Reply #17 on: July 02, 2024, 07:13:26 PM »
 
Quote
....Can you verify whether the Peet Bros system uses regular Cat6 cable?  I'm assuming it does since they mention "8-strand plugs" and show a standard RJ45 plug...

Double check that one as most pre 2006 models used 8-core. Ultimeter 2100, 100 and 800 models from 2006 on use a 10-core cable with modular jack   



 

Offline Gandalf Wite

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Re: Any Weather Stations Suited for Arctic Coditions?
« Reply #18 on: July 02, 2024, 07:43:08 PM »
Quote
....Can you verify whether the Peet Bros system uses regular Cat6 cable?  I'm assuming it does since they mention "8-strand plugs" and show a standard RJ45 plug...

Double check that one as most pre 2006 models used 8-core. Ultimeter 2100, 100 and 800 models from 2006 on use a 10-core cable with modular jack

Oh...so it might be 10 core Cat6 cable with an RJ50 plug.  Ok, good to know.  At least I know this too is readily available and not proprietary.   :-)

Offline TheBushPilot

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Re: Any Weather Stations Suited for Arctic Coditions?
« Reply #19 on: July 02, 2024, 09:50:13 PM »
I bought a 400ft spool of cat-whatever ethernet cable to route through my basement from outside to our kitchen at the time. I believe the caveat to this is that without the 10 conductor cable WeatherText does not work. Otherwise you shouldn't have an issue.

In fact I recall modifying the stock 40ft 10 conductor to carry the 8 lines and then 2 power because I couldn't easily power the junction box where it was located outside.


Cheers
Met Instruments Project
CHAD ASOS ID TRX001:
Camp. Sci. CR1000 Logger
R. M. Young 05103L 3M WS/WD
Apogee Inst. ST-110 2M Fast T
R. M. Young 43408 FARS
Vaisala HMT337 2M Td/Ref T
R. M. Young 41003 Gill (x2)
Setra  Sys. 270 StPr (x3)
R. M. Young 52202 Precip
Eppley Lab PSP 3M Solar Rad
PUSR USR-DR404
QuinLED-ESP32
Camp. Sci. CM110
------------------------
180 watt PV
300 Ah LiFePO4 Bank
------------------------
R. M. Young 26700