UTM Meteorological Station
Contact us if you are interested in accessing the data from our station.
University of Toronto Mississauga Meteorological Station: The UTMMS is a on-campus weather station operated by the Department of Geography for more than 30 years. It was originally set up in response to the needs of geography undergraduates looking for weather data to analyze for course assignments. The station has been managed by Ken Turner since 1975 and is now overseen by the Geography Lab Technician.
UTMMS is located in the field originally described in the records of the UTM property as a walnut orchard. Though a few of the walnut trees are still standing, the site is now mainly a quiet meadow surrounded by mature pine and oak trees. As in the past, the data collected and made available through the UTMMS website has been used this year by various courses in Geography, Biology and Forensics at UTM, as well as by the newly created Centre for Emerging Energy Technologies. In addition, we have welcomed classes from local schools who wish to see an operating weather station first hand. Also, we have fielded requests and enquiries through our website from as far away as Australia.
The past few years has seen some major changes to the UTMMS site, the most significant being the enlarging of the fenced compound in which our instruments are deployed. The enlarging of the compound will allow us to further develop the research area. This will allow increased opportunity for our students to conduct course experiments and get practical experience with a variety of instruments within a secure area. As an example, this past Fall, students in our Hydrology course used the compound to conduct tests on the infiltration capacities of different soil types.
In addition to increasing the size of the compound, we have upgraded the tower on which our wind vane is located. The installation of a 15-metre tower, set on a stable concrete base, has enhanced our ability to develop better high-level wind speed datasets. It will also allow us to improve our incoming solar radiation data by allowing us to mount our solarimeter at an elevation where it can clearly see the open sky without the interference of shadows and obstructions. The new concrete base and guy wire system has improved the level of safety for those who need to work on the tower.
Other initiatives undertaken this year involve experimentation with wireless communication links to the station and investigating the feasibility of creating a real-time weather display through the UTMMS website.
A final achievement for UTMMS this year was the successful transfer of digital data records over to the new electronic archive known as ‘T-Space.’ T-Space will ensure that UTMMS data will be available and accessible on line and free for generations to come. As part of the ongoing effort to ensure the safe keeping of all UTMMS data, the older thermohygrograph charts, going back to 1975, will be scanned and then added to the T-Space archive this summer.
In summary, UTMMS continues to provide a useful source of meteorological data to the UTM community and to those in the local community and beyond.
NOTE: To convert Solar data in millivolts to Watts/m2, multiply by 93.63. Negative values should be considered zero.