Tech @ Alberniweather

How does this thing work?

I often get questions about the stuff that makes Alberniweather “go”. The Weather station, the website, the webcam(s), and all the rest. In the next little while I’ll add information to this page about the systems that make Alberniweather go.

Here’s a starter list of all the components:

  • Davis Vantage Pro 2 Console
    • includes 3 main components connected via Wifi:
    • a display console in the house – connected to power with AA battery backup. Connects to the weather server.
    • An anemometer on the roof (on top of the pole visible in the webcam). Solar powered transmitter with lithium battery.
    • A rain gauge and temperature/humidity/barometer/UV/Solar sensor in the yard. Solar powered transmitter with battery
  • Data Logger and Serial to Ethernet “bridge”
    • the Data logger between the “bridge” and the Davis console converts the raw data into something that can be transmitted, it also stores up to a few days worth of console data. If there is an interruption in the link between the weather server and the Davis station (such as a power outage), no data is lost as long as the batteries in the Davis Console are not depleted.
    • the “bridge” allows the Weather Server to ask for and receive the data stored in the Data logger. It can be polled as much as every second.
  • Weather Server running WeeWx
    • A dedicated computer (currently a 2008 iMac running Debian)
    • it includes software called WeeWx that talks to the Davis station, stores the data archives, creates all of the various kinds of web displays for the data, and then uploads that data to the website.
    • the Weather Server is also retransmitting the live stream from the webcam to the Web Server and to Youtube as well as storing the webcam images that get uploaded to the website and turned into time lapses.
  • Webcam
    • An AmCrest “bubble” security camera sends the live stream and timelapse images to the Weather Server.
  • Web Server (
    • This is where you are right now!
    • Hosted on remote servers in Montreal and Toronto to ensure the website continues during an emergency even if connection to the live data or images is lost.
    • Displays all the data, images, and webcam livestream, uploaded from the weather server
    • Hosts this WordPress Blog

That’s a basic list for now. I’ll add pictures and things another time! 🙂