2002 Annual

Thursday, 17 January 2002: 11:29 AM
The Oklahoma Mesonetwork: Ten Years Later
Kenneth C. Crawford, Oklahoma Climatological Survey, Norman, OK; and R. A. McPherson and R. L. Elliott
Poster PDF (32.3 kB)
The Oklahoma Mesonetwork (termed ‘Mesonet’) was conceived in 1982 by agricultural scientists at Oklahoma State University (OSU) in Stillwater, OK. In 1985, a similar plan was developed by meteorologists at the University of Oklahoma (OU) in Norman, OK. By 1987, the two universities had formed a partnership to establish the Oklahoma Mesonetwork as a joint program of Oklahoma’s comprehensive research universities. The task of administering and maintaining the Mesonet was assigned to the Oklahoma Climatological Survey (OCS; http://www.ocs.ou.edu/), a state agency established in 1980.

The enormity of establishing the Oklahoma Mesonetwork began with an idea and ended with a fully functioning network. Oklahoma Governor Henry Bellmon awarded discretionary funds of $2.0 million in 1991 to establish the Oklahoma Mesonet. The two universities provided an additional $700,000 for the network. Three years later, the Mesonet was commissioned as fully operational. Since then, the Oklahoma Mesonetwork has archived over 2 billion parameter observations at an archival efficiency that exceeds 98.25%. In addition, by 2001, over 700 customers have received one-on-one or small group instruction on how to apply the data to their particular job.

Over the span of a few years, OU and OSU have moved the Oklahoma Mesonetwork from a dream to a state-of-the-art information infrastructure serving the citizens of Oklahoma. Using the Mesonet as a foundation, OCS has pioneered timely, relevant, and award-winning educational outreach programs that make a real difference in people’s lives. This presentation will highlight the Mesonet’s successes, with particular attention to its most recent activities and its stakeholders.

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