Joseph Hill, Thomas Lavigne, and Michael Garcia
Department of Physical and Environmental Sciences, Texas A&M University at Corpus Christi
To support the new Atmospheric Science baccalaureate degree at Texas A&M University Corpus Christi in fall 2016, three instrumentation projects have been assembled. These instruments will be used in the development and execution of the curriculum as a means to provide students and aspiring researchers the opportunity to collect and analyze their own data samples of the atmosphere.
These devices include an electric field mill, a 20-foot weather tower, and a mobile weather station. The electric field mill contains a CR1000M Datalogger as well as the CS110-ST Electric Field Meter. Both the mobile station and weather tower include a CR6 Wi-Fi enabled Datalogger for remote connection, an RM Young Marine Grade Anemometer, a CS106 Vaisala Barometer, and an HMP155a Vaisala Temperature/RH sensor with an RM Young Solar Radiation Shield. In addition, the weather tower contains a TE525 Tipping Rain Gauge, and a CS300 Apogee Pyranometer. The mobile station furthermore equips a Garmin GPS16x GPS Receiver to pinpoint deployment, as well as an RM Young Compass to assist with deployment orientation.
The weather tower is providing valuable data analytics, as well as initiating an atmospheric record for the University. Its rain measurement capability is being actively coincided with the electric field mill to devise a relationship between the atmospheric electric circuit and various rain processes. In addition, the Atmospheric Science undergraduate labs are utilizing the information to perform introductory data analysis to see variable relationships and trends. The mobile stations primary purpose is to pioneer the machinery of atmospheric instrumentation to students so that they learn the advantages, limitations, and overall hierarchy of data acquisition from the ground up.
These instruments provide a boost to the program and assist students and faculty with improving their learning, research, and teaching goals.