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Automatic Weather Station Filchner

Location of AWS Filchner (Graphic: Google Earth)
Location of AWS Filchner (Graphic: Google Earth) (Photo: Gert König-Langlo)

End of Dezember 2015 an automatic weather station was installed on the Filchner Ice Shelf  (-80.43681, -044.43199) 105 m above sea level. The installation took place in the framework of the international Filchner Ice Shelf Project FISP.The huge Filchner Ice Shelf is bordered to the west by the Berkner Island and to the east Coats Land.

The minutely averages of the data acquisition get transfered to AWI Bremerhaven via IRIDIUM and visualized on this web page as promt as possible, see below. Additional, the data get used to perform hourly synoptic weather reports  which get coded according to the  FM-12 code and distributed in the GTS under the WMO# 89047. Since the IRIDIUM transfer is not working propperly for 100% all minutely averages get stored inside the AWS as backup.



Installing AWS Filchner 2015-12-28 (Photo: Tore Hattermann)
Yearly overview of AWS Filchner data (Graphic: Alfred-Wegener-Institut) Daily overview AWS Filchner data (Graphic: Alfred-Wegener-Institut)


The transmitted data show that the AWS Filchner is situated in a rather calm region. Quite seldom the wind exceeds the threshold velocity from the wind turbine (about 10 m/s ). Thus, the battery voltages became very low during polar night.  Fortunately, the battery provided enough power to bridge the dark season. During the coming summer season, a wind turbine with a lower threshold will be installed.

Most probably the propeller of the wind speed sensor is sometimes blocked by rime. Also the radiation sensor seems to be covered with rime and snow. Thus, LWD do not differ significantly from LWU. With increasing temperatures and solar radiation we expect better data during summer.