Date of Award

2001

Level of Access

Open-Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Electrical Engineering (MSEE)

Department

Electrical and Computer Engineering

Advisor

Richard Eason

Second Committee Member

N. Jill Schoof

Third Committee Member

Bruce E. Segee

Abstract

Mount Washington, NH is well known as the "Home of the Worlds Worst Weather." Winds on the mountain regularly exceed 100 miles per hour, the record being 231 mph on April 12, 1934. There is a long history of weather observation on the mountain that has included various recording techniques. Until recently, the primary means of recording data has been paper strip charts. This project represents significant improvements to the Observatory's instrumentation system. Measuring windspeed on Mount Washington presents a number of design challenges. Any instruments directly exposed to the weather must be very durable. Fortunately this problem had been solved and allowed attention to be focused on the instrumentation. The challenge then becomes ensuring the accuracy and reliability of measurements taken from the instruments. This involves electrical interfacing concerns and decisions about how best to distribute the computation of the collected data. The part of this work that was the biggest success is the hardware. For the first time, the Observatory has research grade instruments for measuring and recording windspeed, barometric pressure and temperature and a proper error analysis on each instrument.

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