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DOST-ASTI signs MOA for the installation of an automated weather station

Photo Credit: Department of Science and Technology-Advanced Science and Technology Institute

The Department of Science and Technology-Advanced Science and Technology Institute (DOST-ASTI) recently signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with the Technological University of the Philippines-Taguig on the ULAT Project Partnership.

According to a recent press release, the Department, through the partnership, will install one unit of P-POTEKA automated weather station inside the premises of the university.

Background of the initiative

Part of the objectives of the Department’s Understanding Lightning and Thunderstorms Project (ULAT) is to install 50 P-POTEKA stations in Metro Manila.

P-POTEKA is a lightning observation system that consists of an automatic weather station, a slow antenna, a field mill sensor, and an infrasound sensor.

The data gathered are automatically transmitted to the data server via 3G data communications.

This equipment will help the country, particularly Metro Manila, in generating more interest to study and monitor the weather patterns in the Philippines.

ULAT Project

ULAT, meanwhile, aims to observe the country’s weather behaviour through studying torrential rainfall and thunderstorm occurrences as parameters to eventually enable short-term forecasts.

The project has four main outputs. These are:

  1. Establish a lightening sensor network
  2. Establish a satellite antenna for 3D structuring of thunderclouds
  3. Develop algorithms for forecasting
  4. Establish data sharing for related agencies in disaster risk reduction

If proven to be accurate, the project will be able to hasten weather forecasts, which will benefit disaster response.

Moreover, the country’s own DIWATA-1 and DIWATA-2 can be used to take pictures of cloud activities for 3D estimation of thundercloud precipitation.

These images will verify the amount of precipitation during the occurrence of rainfall.

With the collection of accurate data, it is possible to share and create strategies especially for disaster-related agencies and local government units (LGUs).

This will enable them to prepare in times of weather disturbances.

The Partnership

The Department’s Acting Director expressed his appreciation for the institution’s support and shared how those who are eager to contribute in the delivery of the sensors data will help build to the success of the project.

Additionally, this partnership will be beneficial in enabling more science and evidence-based endeavours.

Under the agreement, both parties will work together in delivering their responsibilities for the accomplishment of the project.

The Department, for its part, will be accountable for the repair and maintenance of the station as well as securing the necessary clearance and permits needed for its installation.

Furthermore, they will also facilitate the access and distribution of the weather data from the P-POTEKA station.

The University, on the other hand, will be responsible for ensuring that the equipment is secured from theft and vandalism, and shall be in charge of reporting to the Department if it happens.

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