92nd American Meteorological Society Annual Meeting (January 22-26, 2012)

Wednesday, 25 January 2012: 11:45 AM
Comparison of Precipitation and Temperature Data From Colorado CRN/RCRN (Climate Reference Network/Regional Climate Reference Network) Stations to Collocated NWS Cooperative and CoAgMet (Colorado Agricultural Meteorological Network) Stations
Room 239 (New Orleans Convention Center )
Wendy A. Ryan, Colorado State Univ., Fort Collins, CO; and N. Doesken

As early as September 2003, installation of USCRN and RCRN stations began in Colorado. The purpose of these stations is to provide and maintain a high quality data record capable of detecting climate trends in (ideally) pristine locations across the U.S. CRN is a national level network of 114 stations and RCRN is a regional scale network with a higher spatial concentration of stations.. The main difference is that CRN stations measure elements in triplicate while RCRN has a single sensor configuration. The CRN precipitation gage is shielded with a small DFIR (Double Fence Intercomparison Reference) while the RCRN utilizes a double alter shield. Colorado is home to 6 CRN and 17 RCRN stations as of this writing. Some of these stations are collocated with either NWS COOP stations or CoAgMet stations. The goal of this paper is to provide an independent comparison of daily and monthly temperature and precipitation records from the CRN/RCRN stations to the longer term COOP/CoAgMet stations. Reasons for this include understanding how the Geonor precipitation gauge and algorithm performs in comparison to 8 manual gage readings at COOP stations, and understanding differences in aspirated temperatures to lower cost thermistor readings that are not aspirated. Understanding biases in these new systems is integral for retaining temporal consistency in data records due to changes in technology.

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