meteorology

Beacon Valley Meteorological Station Measurements

Abstract: 

As part of the Long Term Ecological Research in the McMurdo Dry Valleys of Antarctica (MCM LTER), meteorological data was collected from various locations throughout Taylor, Wright, Victoria, Miers, and Beacon Valleys. These files contain data for the Beacon Valley meteorological station, which was in operation from January 2000 until December 2012 when the station was removed.

Data set ID: 

7002

Additional Project roles: 

14
152
815
153

Purpose: 

 Meteorological data is collected year-round at each of MCM LTER stations. Data is manually downloaded from the meteorological stations during the austral summer. Raw 15 minute data (Level 0) is processed and provided as Level 1 data on the MCM LTER website. Field notes, sensor information, processing procedures, QA/QC, and metadata is provided in the Meteorological Post Processing Documentation and Task Lists for each field season at the following address:  http://www.mcmlter.org/data/meteorology/tasks/task_lists.htm 

Methods: 

 The Beacon Valley meteorological station was added to the McMurdo Dry Valley network in the 2000-2001 field season. It was established in Beacon Valley Initially on November 27, 2000 by Susan Kaspari, Thomas Nylen and Adrian Green.
 
The station was set up to sample sensors every 30 seconds and send summary statistics (for example, averages and maximums) to solid-state storage modules every 15 minutes. This has resulted in approximately 20 values being recorded for final storage in every output interval. 
 
Summary list of measurements and date ranges for the Beacon Valley Met station:
  • Air Temperature at 3 meters above ground: 2000/01 - 2012
  • Relative Humidity at 3 meters above ground: 2000/01 - 2012
  • Soil Tempeature at ground: 2000/01 - 2012
  • Soil Temperature at 5cm belowground: 2000/01 - 2012
  • Soil Temperature at 10cm belowground: 2000/01 - 2012
  • Wind Speed at 3 meters aboveground: 2000/01 - 2012
  • Wind Direction at 3 meters aboveground: 2000/01 - 2012
  • Solar Flux (incoming): 2000/01 - 2012
  • Solar Flux (outgoing): 2000/01 - 2012
  • PAR : 2000/01 - 2012

Beacon Sampling Frequencies

Data sources: 

BENM_AIRT
BENM_RADN
BENM_RH
BENM_SOILT

Instrumentation: 

AIRT: Campbell Scientific 107 temp probe installed to replace the 207 temp/rh probe during 1999/00 and 2000/01 season

RH: Vaisala HMP45C RH probe installed to replace the 207 temp/rh probe during 1999/00 and 2000/01 season.

SOILT: Campbell Sdentific 107B temperature probe.

 SOLAR FLUX (SwRad):  LI‐COR model L1200X silicon pyranometer.

 PAR: LI‐COR model 190SB quantum sensor.

WIND: R.M. Young model 05103 wind monitor.

Maintenance: 

On February 12, 2003, wind direction (WDIR) values were corrected by Thomas Nylen for a systematic error in the measurement created by improper wiring. The wind sensor still worked, but the values were systematically off. The wind direction is off by 180 degrees and mirrored around the north-south axis. For example a wind direction of 160 degrees was corrected by adding 180 degrees to it (340 or -20) and takING the mirror value of that, i.e. 20 degrees.
 
Beacon ceases operations in 2012/2013 season
 
Andrew Fountain: First, the station was installed to support the soil experiments in Beacon that are no longer being conducted, so its original purpose no longer supports its operation.
 
Second, the station is costly in terms of helicopter hours that could be better spent in maintaining the stations in the valleys in which we work particularly our expansion into Miers.
 
Third, the current met station at Lake Hoare, our longest running station in the valleys, is endangered by rising lake levels.  It has perhaps another year or two at most given current rates of increase.  To plan for its removal to a new spot, we need to erect a new station at a new site close by (selection is underway) and have the two stations run simultaneously for a year or so to characterize the small meteorological differences between sites.  We do not have another station to do that and propose to move the Beacon Station to Hoare.
 
Finally, Beacon Valley may be the best monitored valley in the region for air temperature and other met variables because of other projects including Sletten, Marchant, and MacKay.  Sletten's station in Beacon is not far from ours, it has a relatively long data record, and I'm sure we could use his data if needed.
 

Quality Assurance: 

Season notes 2000/01

Thomas Nylen.

1. Station was constructed at Lake Hoare and partially dismantled and flown to Beacon Valley. The station was reconstructed and made operational. 
2. Wind direction looked questionable. Did not have time to adjust, but check again when there in January. Wind rotated 180 degrees on January 15, 2001 @ 1400. Data was corrected in this file. Need to check the next file.
3. First 11 lines is data collected while station was at Lake Hoare, so ignore. 4. Adjusted regulator. 5. GPS Coordinates: S 77 49.681 E 160 38.422 6. Array ID for Beacon is 11, same as Vida. Change in program in Nov 2001 

Season 2001/02

Thomas Nylen

file ben0122.dat

1) Adjusted regulator.
2) Array ID for Beacon is 11, same as Vida. Change in program in Nov 2001 

file ben0123.dat

1) No missing data
2) Array ID for Beacon is 11, same as Vida. New array id on program on the existing module, but the program was not loaded on to the CR10X. Do next November
3) Adjusted clock <+00:00:16> on January 18, 2002 (18) @ 1025
4) Sensor numbers: SwRadIn: 18395, SwRadOut: 18400, PAR: Q23199
5) Check wind alignment on January 18, 2002 (18) @ 1035, no changes. Just before this the cross-arm was removed to tighten top middle post, which temporarily moved the wind vane and pyranometers. Check next file.
6) Replaced storage modules (1 x SM4M) on January 18, 2002 (18) @ 1039 

 

Season 2003/03

Thomas Nylen

fie ben0231.dat
1) No Missing data
2) Array ID for Beacon is 11, same as Vida. New array id on program on the existing module, but the program was not loaded on to the CR10X. Do in January
3) Adjusted clock <-00:00:58> on December 4, 2002 (338) @ 1438
4) Check input values on December 4, 2002 (338) @ 1438, everything looks fine, except voltage is a bit high
5) Old Solar Sensor numbers: SwRadIn: 18395, SwRadOut: 18400, PAR: Q23199. Replaced pyranometers between 1500 and 1515. New numbers: Upward Pyranometers: PY23271; Downward Pyranometers: PY23277. Tried replacing Quantum, but wires near resistor was broken. Need to check before going in the field. Replace Quantum in January.
6) Check wind alignment on December 4, 2002 (338) @ 1445, rotated 5 degrees counterclockwise. Just before this the cross-arm was removed to tighten top middle post, which temporarily moved the wind vane and pyranometers. Check next file.
7) Replaced storage modules (1 x SM4M) on December 4, 2002 (338) @ 1528 
 
file ben0232.dat
1) No Missing data
2) Array ID for Beacon is 11, same as Vida. New array id on program on the existing module, but the program was not loaded on to the CR10X. Do in January
3) Adjusted clock +16 seconds on January 29, 2003 (29) @ 1033
4) Check input values on January 29, 2003 (29) @ 1100, wind looks wrong. Check and found it was point the wrong way. Rotated it 180, but still reading backwards from north (20 degrees, read 340 degrees). All of the wind direction data back to the start of the station were adjusted by rotating the direction 180 degrees and then mirroring that result using the north-south axis. So, a value of 160 would be rotated to 340, and the mirror of that would be +20 degrees.
5) Replaced Quantum on January 29, 2003 (29) between 1045 and 1100. Old number Q23199 and new numbers is Q30806.
6) Replaced storage modules (1 x SM4M) on January 29, 2003 (29) @ 1110
[transcript incomplete]

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