Monthly Archives

August 2014

Airshow Weather Station

By Aviation, Blog

Across the country, hundreds of small airports have little or no weather instrumentation. A simple wind sock might be the only indicator of surface conditions, as is the case for the runway in Preston, Idaho.

After nearly a year of preparation in Preston, an airshow was held on August 2, 2014 to raise funds to extend the runway. Prior to the airshow, I noticed that they lacked basic wind instruments, so my beautiful daughter helped me set up an MS-130 weather station near the runway. This station was connected to Weather Underground through the embedded cell phone and also provided SMS text message weather reports.

I would have loved to catch more video of the show, but I could only catch so much because I was sitting with the air boss, receiving quantitative wind data that was relayed to the pilots throughout the event. It was a great experience for me and added a level of sophistication to a small Idaho airport.

Fly safe.


Wind sensor modbus

Dyacon Wind Sensor: Now Detecting Wind GUST!

By Blog

While sustained winds are of interest, it is the wind gusts that generally cause damage . . . at least for those outside of tornado alley or on hurricane coast.

How do you measure a gust? With a Dyacon wind sensor, of course.

The latest firmware for Dyacon WSD‑1 now gives users more measurement parameters than other wind sensors on the market.

  • Current wind speed
  • Current wind direction
  • 2 minute average wind speed
  • 2 minute average wind direction
  • 10 minute average wind speed
  • 10 minute average wind direction
  • and . . . gust

You get it all for the same price and the same operating current, <2 mA at 12 VDC. Now that’s a bargain! (Sorry, no free knife sets.)

Keep in mind that not all increases in wind speed represent a gust. Where other stations simply look for the maximum wind speed over a period of time, we implement a more technical definition. To meet the definition of a gust, we look for increases in wind speed of at least 10 knots (11.5 mph, or 5.1 m/s) above the 2 minute average. The gust value is retained for 10 minutes and replaced if a higher value occurs.
The sudden impact of a rapid change in wind is what often causes damage. After about 3 seconds, the structures are engulfed, and the pressure differential is reduced.

When it occurs, you’ll see this new value populated on my weather station at


Weather Underground Sticker

Your Weather Station on Your Website

By Blog

*NOTE: This blog post is out of date. Some information may no longer be relevant.*

Many users would like to add weather conditions to their website. Good news! There’s no need to call the web developer and launch into weeks’ worth of work. Instead, Weather Underground has some great “sticker” options, where you can just copy and paste a little code snippet to add it to your blog or website.

Where would this be useful? Some applications include, but certainly aren’t limited to, hotels, outdoor water parks, boat rentals/marinas, golf courses, public libraries, and road condition sites. A resort in Hawaii would do well to brag about their temperate conditions online while we in the northern hemisphere are prying our icy hands off snow shovels.

Dyacon Weather Stations upload directly to Weather Underground. The site from my backyard is below. When you create your Weather Underground account, the “Get Weather Sticker” options will become available to you.


Oh, you want metric? No problem. Simply paste in a different snippet.

Not big enough? How about the following?

And it’s all done without an application engineer’s writing code for a black box data logger, add-on modules, or additional web servers . . . and without any extra fees. The developers at Weather Underground are my new friends. They might even get a Christmas card from me this year.