New radar to keep watch on city skies
By REN LANZONnewsroom@gladstoneobserver.com.au
A SHINING white domed tower and new radar dish on top of Ra- dar Hill are keeping a high-tech watch on Gladstone weather.
Weather bureau engineer Dave McGilvray, who will visit Gladstone to inspect the facility today, said the bureau had been busy upgrading the equipment.
"Basically what we've done is replaced 1950s technology with modern equipment,'' he said.
The new equipment includes a new radar WF100 dish which provides the bureau with a 200 kilometre scan of the Gladstone area each 10 minutes.
He said the radar did not de- tect clouds but showed rain that might be falling at the time. He said an automatic weather station had also been installed on the site.
This provided the bureau with wind speed, air tempera- ture, humidity, air pressure and rainfall. The instruments assist-ed in forecasting the weather.
"We're also tidying up the site including tearing down the old buildings to make the area more presentable,'' Mr McGilvray said.
He said the bureau had also upgraded equipment at Glad- stone Airport both for weather forecasting and aviation purposes.
This included two additional cloud sensors, called ceilome- ters, to record cloud height, and visibility meters "to detect how far you are able to see at any time'' specifically for aviation purposes.
The upgrade had one unfortu- nate result. The Christian radio broadcast- er, Radio Rhema, that operated from the site with the bureau's blessing for the past few years, is looking for premises to continue services.