High tech weather network giving New Yorkers better weather information
ALBANY, N.Y. (WRGB) – There’s lots of weather toys for weather boys and girls to check out. Not really toys, actually, but instead the pieces that help put together the New York State Mesonet program.
What is Mesonet, you ask ?
"Local, real time information,” said Jerry Brotzge, NY Mesonet Program Manager. “The sensors are automated. They are working 24/7 providing everything from snow depth, air temperature, wind chills, [and] dewpoints"
There are 126 of these weather monitoring sites now operating all across New York state, New York City, Long Island.
The program came to life after big storms such as Irene and Sandy inflicted heavy damage to the state. Funding was made available by FEMA to construct an extensive weather monitoring system.
In terms of what it does, it's second to none.
"It's the largest network in the country,” Brotzge said. “About half of all states have a Mesonet of sorts, but ours is the largest, the most number of sites, and also the most sophisticated."
The entire operation is overseen at UAlbany, where the school's weather enterprise group consisting of multiple entities both maintain and keep up with network quality control. In the near future, all of this data will be available for your smart phone.
"At this moment, the app is in a current state to be tested,” said Kara Sulia of the UAlbany xCite program. “So we've gotten it to a point where we are happy with how it looks and we think that users will find it useful"
There’s no electrical lines needed to provide power, either. Everything is generated by solar power.