Tuesday, June 28, 2016

All Weather Rain Gauge

Rain Total: 0.125" measurement taken at 6:30 am. (Note: Up until today, and not including today, the amount of rain that we have received for the month of June is approximately 0.84". I got this information from Weather.com. I'll take another measurement at 7am tomorrow morning, and will try to be consistent with this time frame each day, until the end of the month, so that we can get a picture of the total amount of rainfall.) 0.125 + 0.84 = 0.965" thus far.
We just decided to get a bit more precise with our rain measurements so we bought an All Weather Rain Gauge (which we bought from the Weather Your Way website.) Actually, I am thinking of having my students measure rain and snowfall next year, so I need to practice. I also need to take a short class on how to correctly use the all weather gauge before I can join the CoCoRaHS Network (aka Community Collaborative Rain, Hail & Snow Network.) Here is a CoCoRaHS tutorial on how to use the all weather rain gauge, including placement (which we have incorrectly done here. Darn! Now, we have to find a different location for it.) And, here is a video webinar - Measuring Precipitation: Unique Situations and Challenges.

I had hoped that we could have an official weather station on campus, but it would have had to be monitored daily, and with school out for weekends, summer and vacations, this just wouldn't work. So, we'll hopefully contribute our rain/sleet/snow information. CoCoRaHS has a blog that we will learn a lot from as the science of meteorology is incredibly complex.
Here we have our two gauges together.
This is a close-up of our old gauge.
This is a close-up of the all weather gauge.
It has multiple parts to it, with a measuring tube that fits into an outer cylinder. There is a funnel that catches the rainwater and channels it into the measuring tube.

The all weather gauge is easier to read with its measurements read to the nearest 100th inch. The measuring tube contains a maximum of 1.00 inch of rain. Any overflow goes into the outer cylinder which you would pour into the measuring tube multiple times, if necessary, to calculate the total amount of rain. If rainfall is below 0.01 inch, it is measured as "T" for trace.
What I did find interesting is that one of our 55 gallon rain barrels got 2/3 of the way full after our short 0.125 inch rainfall, which yielded about 37 gallons of water collected from the front side of the roof.

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