Monitoring Critical Conditions for
Quality and Compliance / Page 4
Automatic Monitoring of Boundary Layer
Structures with Ceilometers / Page 7
Australian Bridge Deck Heating
System Controlled by Vaisala
Ice Detection / Page 10
Vaisala in Brief
3 President’s Column
4 Monitoring Critical Conditions for
Quality and Compliance
Vaisala is a global leader in
environmental and industrial
measurement. Building on more
than 70 years of experience, Vaisala
contributes to a better quality of
life by providing a comprehensive
range of innovative observation
and measurement products and
services for meteorology, weather
critical operations and controlled
environments. Headquartered in
Finland, Vaisala employs over 1,400
professionals worldwide and is listed
on the NASDAQ OMX Helsinki stock
7 Automatic Monitoring of Boundary
Layer Structures with Ceilometers
10 Australian Bridge Deck Heating System
Controlled by Vaisala Ice Detection
12 Optimized and Enhanced Data Collection
via Private Network in the UK and Ireland
14 What’s the Weather Like?
16 WMO Intercomparison of
Radiosonde Systems in China
18 Stable Incubator pH Reduces
Potential Stress to Embryos
Custom Solution RWIS Grid across Ohio
Saving Lives and Money
Briefly noted
Vaisala Veriteq Continuous Monitoring
System helps life science companies ensure
uncompromised product quality. Page 4
New robust algorithm for online
retrieval of boundary layer structure
enables new tools
for air quality monitoring and forecasting. Page 7
Cover photo: Shutterstock / Editor-in-Chief: Sanna Nyström
Publisher: Vaisala Oyj, P.O. Box 26, FI-00421 Helsinki, FINLAND
Phone (int.): + 358 9 894 91 / Telefax: + 358 9 8949 2227
Internet: / Layout: Sampo Korkeila
Printed in Finland by: SP-Paino / ISSN 1238-2388
2 184/2010
Each winter in the south eastern states of
Australia, a combination of marginal winter
weather conditions present hazardous road
conditions for drivers. Page 10
President’s Column
There’s Nothing
Like Challenges
to Make You
The year 2010 has been a challenging one for Vaisala. We have faced
some profitability issues, and have
invested a lot of time and effort
into taking a good hard look at our
internal operations. This has resulted
in an efficiency program with a clear
aim to improve our competitiveness
while maintaining high and consistent
product quality. So far, we are seeing
encouraging results.
Additionally, a global shortage of
electronics components in combination with us implementing a new
enterprise resource planning (ERP)
system has affected our delivery
capability. Some of you have seen this
as longer than usual delivery times,
which we deeply regret. We are forcefully addressing this issue, and will
be back to normal before the end of
the year.
Despite the difficulties, we have
had some great accomplishments as
well. As a result of the internal efficiency program we have been able to
align our organization so that it now
responds to the needs of our market
segments more effectively. New products have been introduced to support
our customers in their environmental
monitoring tasks, including a new
and improved ceilometer model, new
meteorological and road weather
data visualization applications, and
additions to our industrial instrument
In April, we made the first
concrete move towards realizing
the redefined strategic target of our
Cleanrooms and Chambers market
segment to focus on the Life Science
and High Technology market. The
acquisition of Veriteq Instruments,
Inc. provided us with additional life
science application knowhow and
a gateway to this strictly regulated
market. What made the acquisition
easier was the strong customer commitment both companies share.
Internal development initiatives,
new products, acquisitions – what
it all comes down to is one thing
and one thing only, and that is our
continuing objective to be the best
possible partner for our customers.
I’m convinced that the transitions we
are currently going through ultimately
only strengthen our position as a
first class provider of environmental
Kjell Forsén
184/2010 3
Monitoring Critical
Conditions for Quality
and Compliance
Sanna Nyström / Editor-in-Chief / Vaisala / Helsinki, Finland
How do life science companies ensure fail-safe
monitoring of their controlled environments to
maintain uncompromised product quality? They
rely on a Vaisala Veriteq Continuous Monitoring
System that delivers gap-free records and ensures
full regulatory compliance.
One such company, a US-based
molecular diagnostics specialist,
collaborates with pharmaceutical
firms to research disease biomarkers
and the links between cancer and
the human autoimmune system. The
samples and reagents used in the
research often comprise the life’s
work of hundreds of scientists and
the hope of thousands of patients
awaiting new therapies and treatments.
To preserve these valuable
assets, the company previously
4 184/2010
relied on a monitoring system that
used simple, generic data loggers and
chart recorders to record temperature and humidity in all laboratories
and storage equipment. The system
worked, but entailed several checks
each day, tying up resources. The
system’s measurement and recording
methods were effectively passive and
incapable of communicating excursions to personnel.
Not only did the old system
necessitate an immense time investment, it also left valuable, often
irreplaceable samples vulnerable
to temperature excursions caused
by system failures such as power
outage or a break-down in one of the
freezer units. The company decided
to switch to the Vaisala Veriteq Continuous Monitoring System, which
provides a method of staying in close
touch with every monitored area,
No More Gaps
in the Data
The situation described above is
nothing exceptional, as more and
more organizations find that old
recorders and manual methods to
track temperature and humidity
data no longer correspond to their
needs. It is becoming clear that the
best way to ensure the high quality
of products and processes in FDA &
EMA-regulated storage, processing
and manufacturing is to invest in
automated continuous monitoring
instrumentation and systems.
The Vaisala Veriteq Continuous
Monitoring System is a monitoring
and alarming solution that provides
secure and high accuracy records
for temperature, humidity and other
critical parameters. The system collects data remotely from a network of
measurement instruments, stores it
in a secure location, and gives automated alarms according to customerspecified thresholds.
The biggest benefit of the system,
however, is its ability to guarantee a
continuous record of gap-free data.
Data are recorded independently at
the point of measurement, and then
backed up with triple redundancy to
safeguard it from power failures and
network problems.
Continuous monitoring and
fail-safe data recording combined
guarantee that vulnerable products
remain protected at all times and
full compliance with all regulatory
requirements is assured.
No More Manual Work,
No More Expensive
Installation Projects
The system can be easily customized to suit different applications
and needs. It is scalable from a single
monitoring point to thousands distributed across several facilities and
multiple locations. Installation is also
cost-effective as the system deploys
without a re-wiring or cabling to
existing Ethernet-wired, Power over
Ethernet, and WiFi networks.
What’s more, multiple sites can
be monitored from one location
through a browser-based interface
from anywhere in the network. By
simply logging into the network,
personnel with user permissions can
set the system up to display real-time
data, create reports on demand and
automate frequently run reports
with scheduled delivery by email to
relevant staff.
Flexible reporting capabilities keep monitored environments
compliant with FDA, EMA, the
Joint Commission, CAP, AABB and
other regulatory and accreditation
requirements. Detailed and summary
reports can include values, locations, duration, acknowledgements
and corrective actions, for example.
Furthermore, all interactions with the
system are documented, providing a
complete record for compliance with
regulatory and accreditation requirements.
Forewarned is
After switching to the Vaisala Veriteq
Continuous Monitoring System, the
molecular diagnostics company
found that the system’s most beneficial feature compared to manually
downloadable alternatives is that it
sends immediate notification when
anything changes.
This applies not only to changes
in conditions of the monitored
environments, but also to problems
in the monitoring system itself. If a
recorder is accidentally disconnected
or the connectivity goes down
because of a server issue, the system
alerts staff to respond immediately.
It also points out exactly where the
problem is.
The alarming capabilities are
easy to configure, customize and
automate. Escalating multi-threshold
alarms can be defined to trigger
a notification at the first sign of a
problem, sending alerts to specified personnel via cell phone, pager,
desktop display, dial-out phone, or
The molecular diagnostics
company monitors refrigerators,
freezers, and server rooms to cover
all pieces of equipment that are vital
to protecting their samples, reagents
and laboratory areas. Multiple temperature thresholds have been set up
for each monitored area, according
to the seriousness of the problem a
malfunction can cause.
The benefits of the alarms
became evident in a situation where
the monitoring system signaled that
one of the company’s freezers was
going above its alarm threshold. At
first, there seemed to be no explanation for the temperature rise; the
difference was very subtle and the
184/2010 5
Quality problems can be very damaging, and it only takes the tiniest
mistake or malfunction for them to occur (see examples below). The good
news is the risk of something going wrong can be significantly reduced
with a continuous monitoring and alarming system that provides complete
records for measured parameters and the necessary safeguards for early
warning of potential quality hazards.
Effects of compromised quality
Vaisala acquired Veriteq Instruments,
Inc. in March 2010. The goal of the
merger was to combine the strengths
of two industry leaders to create an
offering and services to the benefit
of customers operating in strictly
regulated life science markets.
Before the acquisition, Vaisala
had a foothold in the global pharmaceutical market, but was largely
considered an instrument provider.
There was a need to strengthen
and expand offering targeted at the
pharmaceutical and other life science
industry customers in order to bring
additional capabilities to Vaisala,
and consequently, added value to
Veriteq was the leading provider
of continuous monitoring systems
6 184/2010
Obligatory responses
to facility audits
Product replacements
Unusable products
inevitable losses
Life’s work down the drain
Missed customer commitments
What can (and does) go wrong
Equipment malfunction
Human error
Combined Offering of
Two Industry Leaders
Chart record fail
freezer was within range for most of
the day.
However, after close examination
of the measurement data, the middle
of the freezer was identified as the
location of the temperature change,
and a blockage in the cooling system
was found. The company is convinced that without the system alerting them of the subtle temperature
change, the problem would not have
been discovered until the freezer had
failed completely.
Potential cost of quality issues
Power failures
Interrupted network connections
and data logging solutions for the
life science industry, with strong
competence in understanding the
customers’ needs and the regulatory requirements of the market.
However, its operation was largely
focused on the North American
market, while Vaisala’s global presence and the greater resources of a
larger company created new oppor-
tunities for developing new products
and services.
For the customer, the meaning of
the acquisition can be summed up in
one simple concept: a total solution
from one supplier. A solution that is
easy to buy and install, and easy to
validate and use – a fail-safe choice
for protecting high-value assets in life
science environments.
Christoph Münkel / Senior Scientist / Vaisala / Hamburg, Germany
Reijo Roininen / Product Manager / Vaisala / Helsinki, Finland
Automatic Monitoring
of Boundary Layer
Structures with
New robust algorithm for online retrieval of
boundary layer structures enables new tools for
air quality monitoring and forecasting. Why? It
covers not only ideal boundary layer diurnal
evolution, but also situations involving clouds,
fog, and precipitation.
Ceilometers are eye-safe, compact
and robust lidar systems designed
for unattended operation at airfields
and meteorological stations. Their
primary task is the detection of cloud
base layers, but automatic monitoring of boundary layer structures has
become another important application of these instruments.
This is due to the fact that the
planetary boundary layer height –
also known as the mixing layer height
– is a key parameter for characterization of air pollution together with
urban emission source strengths,
traffic emissions and weather
influences. As emissions and other
near-surface pollutants are diluted
in a vertical direction within the
planetary boundary layer, monitoring
the layer height is critical for estimating the nature, transformation and
removal of pollutants.
Vaisala has developed an automatic algorithm for online retrieval of
boundary layer depth and additional
residual structures that covers not
only ideal boundary layer diurnal
evolution, but all situations involving
clouds, fog, and precipitation.
The new algorithm is part of the
Vaisala Boundary Layer View (BLVIEW), an independent data collection, storage, analysis and reporting
tool designed to be used with the
Vaisala Ceilometers CL31 and CL51.
Lidar Ceilometers
in Boundary Layer
Structure Monitoring
Lidar ceilometers are reliable tools
for unattended boundary layer structure monitoring around the clock up
to heights exceeding 2,500 meters
[1, 2]. Comparison to temperature,
184/2010 7
ing after about 10:00 local time are
visible in this density plot. On the
other hand precipitation and cloud
bases call for a more sophisticated
The following section describes
the steps suggested to turn this standard gradient method into a robust
algorithm that is able to identify
situations where precipitation or fog
prevents the detection of boundary
layer height, and does not use high
backscatter from preceding clouds
for profile averaging.
Visualization of ceilometer backscatter profiles with Vaisala BL-VIEW. This textbook evolution
of a convective boundary layer has been recorded by a Vaisala Ceilometer CL51 in Vantaa,
Finland on August 19, 2010. The BL-VIEW user interface enables convenient zooming to details
with the computer mouse; the navigator window preserves the view of the whole day.
source than the CL31 to enable cloud
base reports up to 13,000 meters.
Its increased signal-to-noise ratio
reveals also weak elevated aerosol
humidity, and wind profiles reported
by RASS, sodar, radio soundings, and
weather mast in-situ sensors has confirmed their ability to detect convective or residual layers [3].
In addition, ceilometers with
a single lens optical design enable
precise assessment of inversion
layers and nocturnal stable layers
below 200 meters. This design has
been chosen for the Vaisala Ceilometers CL31 and CL51 [5].
The single lens optical design of
Vaisala’s ceilometers uses the inner
part of the lens for transmitting and
its outer part for receiving light (see
Figure 1). This provides overlap of
the transmitter light cone and the
receiver field-of-view over the whole
measuring range and allows reliable
detection of also the very low nocturnal stable layers below 200 meters
not seen by other instrument types.
In addition, the CL51 has a larger
lens and a more powerful laser
8 184/2010
Gradient Method –
Standard for Identifying
Vertical Extent of
Aerosol Layers
A widely applied approach to identify
the vertical extent of aerosol layers
within the planetary boundary layer
is the gradient method that searches
the range and overlap corrected
attenuated backscatter profile for
local gradient minima [4]. Its application to ceilometer data involves
averaging in time and range.
The Vaisala CL31 recommended
report interval for aerosol investigation is 16 s; profile range resolution
is 10 m. Applying 1,800 s and 360 m
time and height sliding averaging
reveals local gradient minima within
the profiles and thus information
about aerosol layers. This approach
works generally well for cloudless
In Figure 2, backscatter profiles
from a common day with rain and
clouds are treated with the gradient
method. A low nocturnal layer and
a convective boundary layer evolv-
Enhanced Gradient
Method = Robust All
Weather Algorithm
The first step towards a robust all
weather algorithm is the application
of a cloud and precipitation filter. In
Figure 2, the large backscatter values
from the single 1,300 m cloud at 09:40
are still visible half an hour later
when no cloud was detected in that
range. High backscatter from clouds
and precipitation should therefore
not be used in the averaging process.
The result of applying this filter
is shown in Figure 3. It reveals that
there was no more precipitation
after 06:30 and allows a better view
on aerosol backscatter from the
vicinity of clouds. Reporting of gradient minima is not done during the
precipitation event.
Long averaging intervals help
prevent false gradient minima hits
generated by signal noise. On the
other hand, this approach reduces
the ability of the algorithm to
respond to short scale signal fluctuations in space and time. Signal noise
amount depends on range and time
of the day. The enhanced automatic
algorithm introduces variable averaging parameters that enable a much
better view on a stable nocturnal
layer at a height of around 100
meters that is detected before and
after the morning rain shower (see
Figure 4).
The final step towards the
enhanced gradient method involves
the suppression of false layer hits
NWS Sterling, VA, Unit B log10 of backscatter on 09.09.2009 in 10
Gradient local minimum
Height in m, 360 m mean
Figure 1. The single lens optical concept of
Vaisala’s ceilometers.
Time on 09.09.2009, 1800 s mean
Figure 2. Density plot (local time vs. height) of range corrected attenuated
backscatter profiles recorded by a Vaisala Ceilometer CL31 at the U.S.
National Weather Service’s test site in Sterling, VA on September 9, 2009.
Fixed sliding averaging parameters of 1,800 s and 360 m are used that
show a nocturnal and a convective layer. On this common day with rain
and clouds, fixed averaging parameters do not reveal all aerosol layers in
a satisfactory way.
Gradient local minimum
Further information:
Reijo Roininen, Product Manager
Time on 09.09.2009, 1800 s mean
Figure 3. Density plot of range corrected attenuated backscatter profiles
recorded by a Vaisala CL31 at the NWS Sterling site on September 9, 2009.
A cloud and precipitation filter is applied to the data shown in Figure 2.
NWS Sterling, VA, Unit B log10 of backscatter on 09.09.2009 in 10−9 m−1 sr−1
Gradient local minimum
Height in m
[1] Emeis, S., K. Schäfer, C. Münkel, 2009:
Observation of the structure of the urban
boundary layer with different ceilometers
and validation by RASS data. Meteorol. Z.,
18, 149-154.
[2] Haman, C., B. L. Lefer, M. E. Taylor, G.
Morris, B. Rappenglueck, 2010: Comparison of Mixing Heights using Radiosondes
and the Vaisala CL31 Mixing Height Algorithm. 15th Symposium on Meteorological
Observation and Instrumentation at the
90th AMS Annual Meeting (Atlanta, GA).
[3] Münkel, C., S. Emeis, K. Schäfer, B.
Brümmer, 2009: Improved near-range
performance of a low-cost one lens lidar
scanning the boundary layer. In: Picard, R.
H., K. Schäfer, A. Comeron, E. I. Kassianov,
C. J. Mertens (Eds.): Remote Sensing of
Clouds and the Atmosphere XIV, Proc.
SPIE, Bellingham, WA, USA, Vol. 7475.
[4] Münkel, C., 2007: Mixing height determination with lidar ceilometers - results from
Helsinki Testbed. Meteorol. Z., 16, 451-459.
[5] Münkel, C., R. Roininen, 2008: Mixing layer
height assessment with a compact lidar
ceilometer. Symposium on Recent Developments in Atmospheric Applications of
Radar and Lidar at the 88th AMS Annual
Meeting (New Orleans, LA).
NWS Sterling, VA, Unit B log10 of backscatter on 09.09.2009 in 10
Height in m, 360 m mean
generated by small fluctuations of
the backscatter signal intensity. This
is the case around 07:00 at heights
between 400 meters and 1,000
meters. Figure 4 shows a nocturnal
layer followed by a convective layer
with cloud formation reaching 1,600
meters in the afternoon.
Time on 09.09.2009
Figure 4. Density plot of range corrected attenuated backscatter profiles
recorded by a Vaisala CL31 at the NWS Sterling site on September 9, 2009.
All steps of the novel robust algorithm for boundary layer investigation
have been applied to the data shown in Figure 2.
184/2010 9
Simon Harrod / Regional Market Manager / Vaisala / Melbourne, Australia
Australian Bridge Deck
Heating System Controlled
by Vaisala Ice Detection
Australia – “a land of sweeping plains, of ragged
mountain ranges, of droughts and flooding
rains”. No mention of frost, ice nor snow in the
iconic poem by Dorothea McKellar dedicated
to a country that is known around the world for
warm weather and fine beaches. However, each
winter in the south eastern states of Australia,
the climate is conducive to a combination of
marginal winter weather conditions which
present hazardous road conditions for drivers.
The bridge deck heating coils
were installed during construction
10 184/2010
In Victoria, the Great Dividing Range
winds from the north east down to the
south west providing extended regions
of up to 600 meters in elevation that
major roads traverse. One such road is
the Calder Freeway; the main arterial
between Melbourne and Bendigo, with
average daily vehicle volumes exceeding 10,000 vehicles per day.
The roads in the Calder corridor
have been upgraded and improved in
a number of ways over the years, culminating in the dual carriage Calder
Freeway that serves the area today.
Prior to the current Calder
Freeway, the old Calder Highway
wound its way through numerous
country towns on its way north to
Bendigo. To the south of Woodend, it
passes through the Black Forest, the
most eastern section of the Wombat
State Forest. It was here that the first
Vaisala Ice Warning systems were
installed in 1989, utilising pavement
based road sensors. The systems are
still in operation today, activating
local warning signs to alert drivers of
hazardous conditions.
Ice Detection and
Control System to
Determine Hazardous
The winter conditions were taken into
account during the design of the new
Calder Freeway. VicRoads, the highway
department for the state of Victoria,
installed bridge deck heating in eight
dual span bridges in the Macedon to
Kyneton section of the Freeway during
the construction phase.
The Bridge Deck Heating consists
of three separate heating coils that
are laid into the base of the bridge
deck prior to the construction of
the road surface. A heating control
system is then used to manage
the delivery of up to 160 Kwatts of
heating per bridge deck to prevent
and remove frost, ice and snow
hazards from the bridge decks. The
heating control system determines
how many of the heating coils to
apply power to and for what period
of time heating is required.
In 2008, Vaisala was contracted
by VicRoads to implement an ice
detection and control system to
determine the onset of hazardous
conditions, activate driver advisory
warning signs, and manage the
heating control. Whilst the system
is completely autonomous, it also
communicates with VicRoads Traffic
Management Centre (TMC) to enable
the current status of detection,
warning signs and heating to be available throughout the organisation.
Benefits from
Remote Sensors
and Configurable
Processing Unit
Implementing ice detection on the
heated bridge decks with traditional pavement based sensors was
difficult due to the presence of the
embedded heating loops. Vaisala’s
Warning signs along the Calder Freeway alert drivers on icy conditions.
non-invasive road weather sensors
(Vaisala Remote Road Surface State
Sensor DSC111) were chosen to avoid
causing damage to the heating coils.
The project began in March 2008.
During the first winter, the system
was installed and commissioned,
and the collection of data began. An
optimisation phase followed, during
which the gathered data was analysed and used to adjust the software
configuration prior to winter 2009.
A total of 13 detection sites were
installed, each connected to a processing unit (Vaisala HydroMet™ System
MAWS110), which uses the sensor data
to activate the appropriate heat setting
from a three-stage heating system.
The configurability of the
MAWS110 enabled a number of
important features to be implemented, such as VicRoads RMS
communication protocol between the
field sites and the Traffic Management Centre, the capability to log
one minute road weather conditions,
sign and heating status on site for the
entire winter, and integrating existing
embedded temperature sensors to
the system.
Final Outcome: Vital
Improvement to Local
Road Conditions
Due to the customised nature of the
system, comprehensive documen-
tation and testing was a given.
Throughout the project, Vaisala acted
as the central co-ordination point
between the electrical contractor,
VicRoads Regional Office, VicRoads
Traffic Management Centre and
VicRoads ITS project group.
Extensive system testing was also
carried out by the VicRoads Northern Region office, with numerous
field staff involved in the checking of
sign and heating operation.
In summarising the project and
its outcomes, the VicRoads Northern
Region states:
“The scope of the project was to
refurbish the existing system in 2008
and to deliver a reliable and stable
Ice Warning System. The improvements provided by the Vaisala
technology and its importance to the
Calder corridor cannot be underestimated. The solution, including ice
detection, automatic warning sign
and bridge deck heating operation, is
providing all road users with reliable
and up to the minute information
about the local road condition.”
“The value of having such
systems in place, especially during
winter when adverse weather conditions in the vicinity of the Calder
corridor are high during the colder
months, is vital for the confidence of
the local communities, as well as all
road users.“
184/2010 11
Tim Nicholls / Data Services Manager / Vaisala / Birmingham, UK
Optimized and
Enhanced Data
Collection via
Private Network
in the UK
and Ireland
Every day people around the world want quick
and easy access to current data. At the same
time there is a requirement to keep sensitive
information secure. The situation is the same
for those responsible for road maintenance
everywhere – they rely on receiving the latest
information from road side weather stations to
make critical decisions.
Weather in the UK and Ireland can
change rapidly and it’s often the
timing of the changeable conditions
that is crucial. When a snow event,
for example, is forecast it can often
be preceeded by a period of rain.
From a road maintenance point of
view, having the right information at
the right time is the key as treatments too early could get washed
away but too late could allow snow
to accumulate on the road network.
Therefore, receiving continuous
meteorological data in the form of
atmospheric and road surface measurements from a range of sensors
is vitally important. However, being
12 184/2010
able to see the situation on the road
through a camera included in the
weather station is of unquestionable
value as well.
Private Broadband
Network Ensures Fast
and Secure Data Transfer
A recent Vaisala project in the UK has
been to develop a service that connects weather stations to a private
network and adds real-time streaming of road weather camera images
where available. Data and images are
transferred to a central database in
Birmingham, where they are instantly
made available for customers to view
via web-based display applications.
This means that the end users are
looking at data and images that have
been recorded just a few seconds
Each station in the network has
a broadband-enabled phone line,
though the network supports wireless connections as well. Routers
are specifically configured at each
location to hide the connections from
the public Internet, increasing the
security of the data.
The use of broadband facilitates
fast transfer of information from each
weather station, but also increased
transfer frequencies. As the broadband connection is permanent or
“always-on”, data can be transferred
as frequently as needed. A typical
rate is every 10 minutes.
For added resilience, two separate connections are available into
the database. Should there be an
issue with one connection, the information will automatically re-route
through the other.
See It for Yourself –
Instant View of Current
Weather Conditions
The private network also enables
direct access to cameras installed
in the weather stations. Live images
from the cameras update every
second, generating an instant view of
not only the current weather conditions across the road network, but
also of the traffic flows and volumes,
sometimes at remote locations hundreds of miles away.
Live thumbnail views provide
a quick overview of all cameras,
displaying the current conditions at
a glance across the road network.
Larger, higher resolution images can
be accessed from any single camera,
and depending on the access-level,
additional camera functionality
such as a digital pan and zoom
is available. Access can also be
password-protected if extra security
is required.
Critical winter weather often
happens overnight, so the cameras
are equipped with a second lens
that is more sensitive to low light
conditions. Full-screen images will
automatically adjust to using the
best lens. In addition, infra-red lamps
attached with the cameras allow
visible images even in pitch black
“The main benefit I can see is the
live camera feed which will be
very useful for decision makers.”
Fiona Stone, North Yorkshire County Council, England.
Established Method
of Data Collection
with Potential for
Enhanced Services
Approximately 150 weather stations
are now connected to this private
network in the UK and Ireland, and
the number of stations increases all
the time. In some cases the weather
station itself will have been in the
same location, using the same hardware and utilities, for many years.
Existing weather stations can be
connected to the new service simply
by adding one or two new processing
units and ensuring the phone lines
are broadband enabled. Cameras can
also easily be added if they are not
already present.
The use of the private network
is now established as a core method
of data collection and will only
increase in importance as a larger
Thumbnail views provide a quick overview of all cameras across the road network, providing
snapshot information on current weather conditions and traffic flows and volumes.
number of stations are connected.
The functionality this private
network allows is not static though.
There is potential for enhanced
services to be developed that add
further value to customer operations
in road weather and other applications.
An example of this could be
the instant generation of real-time
alerts to traffic flows and volumes
with the introduction of new traffic
counting technology. The alwayson connection the private network
brings opens the door to opportunities.
184/2010 13
Sanna Nyström / Editor-in-Chief / Vaisala / Helsinki, Finland
What’s the
Vaisala Weather Radars for
Optimized Dual Polarization
Weather radars measure precipitation by emitting and receiving radio
frequency signals. The radar transmits signal pulses that are propagated through the atmosphere and
scatter back from hydrometeors and
other atmospheric scatterers. The
radar’s receiver picks up the echo,
and data processing techniques are
used to analyze it.
Vaisala’s weather radar product
family consists of a complete offering
of Doppler C-band weather radars,
signal and radar control processing
technology, and related software and
services. The heart of the product
family is the dual polarization capability, for which the whole line was
orinally developed and optimized.
Dual polarization technology
ensures more detailed information on
precipitation, distinguishing between
variations in precipitation type and
providing more accurate rainfall estimates. Weather radars are used to
gather cumulative rainfall measurements that aid authorities in everything from weather forecasts and
severe weather warnings to aviation
safety and hydropower optimization.
Superior Data Quality
Thanks to Thoroughly
Optimized System
The success of hydrometeor classification is dependent on data quality.
Vaisala’s whole weather radar product
family has been designed specifically
for dual polarization measurement,
14 184/2010
which means that all hardware and
software have been optimized to work
as an integrated system to provide
the best possible data quality.
Dual polarization measurement
improves data quality significantly
compared to single polarization technology. The accuracy of cumulative
rainfall estimates is improved as the
precipitation rate measurement is
based on differential phase between
horizontal and vertical channels
instead of reflectivity. Unlike reflectivity, differential phase is directly proportional to the precipitation rate,
independent of the radar calibration
and unbiased by intervening clutter
of partial beam blockage, making it
very robust in measuring moderate
and heavy rain.
Thanks to its ability to measure
parameters needed in analyzing the
shape of targets, dual polarization
also enables eliminating non-meteorological targets from the radar data.
Attenuation Correction
for Highly Accurate
Precipitation Estimates
Data quality is also affected by the
choice of radar frequency, i.e. the
wavelength of the measurement
signal. Shorter X-band and C-band
wavelengths are more sensitive for
identifying the atmospheric targets,
but on the other hand, they experience a higher degree of attenuation
(i.e. the loss of sensitivity) by intervening heavy precipitation along the
Vaisala’s weather
radar product family
offers optimized
dual polarization
for professional
signal path than the longer S-band,
which is less attenuated.
Therefore, the choice of radar
frequency has been a compromise
between optimizing the sensitivity of
the radar and limiting the degree of
attenuation. This has been a problem
especially for those regions of the
world where heavy precipitation is
commonplace, as the strength of
attenuation grows proportionally to
the rainfall intensity, often resulting in a complete loss of the X-band
signal in intense rain.
Vaisala’s radars operate on the
shorter, more sensitive C-band wavelength, but with the advent of dual
polarization technology, Vaisala has
also been able to successfully correct
for the attenuation in the radar
echoes, resulting in quantitative precipitation estimates that are on par
with S-band radars in accuracy.
IRIS™ – Control and
Monitor a Complete
Weather Radar System
The core of Vaisala’s weather radar
systems is the Vaisala Sigmet Inter-
active Radar Information System
(IRIS™), a comprehensive software
system designed to provide full
control and monitoring of a complete
weather radar system from data
processing to managing the network.
The system architecture is fully scalable and works just as well with a
single radar as a network or radars.
IRIS™ has been designed as userfriendly as possible with automatic
data acquisition and display, network
communication and remote control
and monitoring possibilities. At each
step, concise interactive menus are
available for monitoring and managing the process, which makes it easy
to trace data all the way from the
radar receiver to the end user. The
logical user interface simplifies even
complex scanning requirements, and
scanning and data acquisition are
adjusted automatically in response
to changing weather.
Recently updated features
include new and improved display
applications for 3D rendering of data
and a web interface for accessing the
data via a browser.
Further information:
Attenuation correction illustrated. Left panel, corrected reflectivity fields at C-band, and right
panel, S-band measurement at the same time. The arrow points to the C-band radar location
versus S-band radar location.
Weather radars generally collect data using volume scan strategies, which provide information on the angle, distance, and height from the radar site to a target. Vaisala has developed a
new IRIS™ 3D View application for viewing and interacting with the volumetric data in three
Vaisala Weather Radar
Vaisala’s weather radar product family consists of a complete offering of Doppler C-band weather radars, signal and
radar control processing technology, and related software and services:
• Vaisala Weather Radar WRM200 – dual polarization
Doppler radar equipped with magnetron transmitter
• Vaisala Weather Radar WRK200 – dual polarization
Doppler radar equipped with klystron transmitter
• Vaisala Weather Radar WRM 100 and Vaisala Weather
Radar WRK100 – single polarization Doppler radars
with upgrade possibility to dual polarization
• Vaisala Sigmet Digital Receiver and Signal Processor
RVP900™ – comprehensive digital IF and signal processing functions on an open Linux PC platform
• Vaisala Sigmet Radar and Antenna Control Processor
RCP8™ – Sigmet’s third generation radar and antenna
control processor on a Linux PC platform
• IRIS™ – suite of software tools for configuring,
calibrating and operating a complete weather radar
• HydroClass™ – real-time hydrometeor classification
• Radar upgrades – modernizing an existing radar with
new signal and radar control processors, receivers,
transmitters and software can give a whole new lease
on life for older radar technology
184/2010 15
Sanna Nyström / Editor-in-Chief / Vaisala / Helsinki, Finland
of Radiosonde
Systems in China
The 8th World Meteorological
Organization Intercomparison of
Radiosonde Systems gathered all
leading radiosonde manufacturers to
Yangjiang, China on 12-31 July. The
Intercomparison, organized every
4-5 years, is a continuous four-week
sounding campaign, designed to be
an objective venue for assessing the
qualities and performance of different radiosonde systems.
The last two Intercomparisons
were held in Mauritius (2005)
and Brazil (2001). This year the
campaign, hosted by the China
Meteorological Administration, was
held at the Yangjiang Observing
16 184/2010
Station, about 200 kilometers from
Hong Kong.
Vaisala participated in both
categories of the Intercomparison.
Vaisala Radiosonde RS92-SGP was
entered into the Operational Radiosondes group and the Vaisala Reference Radiosonde RR01 prototype
into the Scientific Sensor Intercomparison (SSI) for experimental instruments.
“We’re happy with the performance of the RS92 in the Intercomparison”, says Johanna Lentonen,
Product Area Manager to Vaisala’s
sounding systems. “Thanks to our
continuous quality efforts, overall
quality and data availability were on
Latest developments
in Vaisala’s sounding
software include
new algorithms for
finetuned humidity
and temperature
a very good level, and the modifications we have made on the measurement algorithms have improved
accuracy as planned.”
Bigger Event than Ever
More radiosondes than ever before
were entered into the Intercomparison – ten models from eight
different countries were flown in
the Operational Radiosondes group,
and five models from four countries
participated in the Scientific Sensor
For Vaisala, the campaign
began with preliminary soundings
on July 12. During the next three
weeks, a total of 46 soundings were
performed: 34 with the RS92 in the
Operational Radiosondes group, and
12 with the RR01 prototype in the
SSI group. Observations were made
during both day and night time.
The WMO will publish the results
of the Intercomparison in 2011.
Improved Humidity
and Temperature
Measurement Accuracy
New algorithms have been added
to the Vaisala DigiCORA® Sounding
System MW31 software to finetune
humidity and temperature measurements. According to the preliminary
feedback received during the Intercomparison, the modifications have
improved both daytime and night
time humidity measurement.
Humidity measurement accuracy
was improved by taking into account
more details than before. First, time
lag correction was added, which
improves performance especially in
cold temperatures, where the time
constant of the humidity sensor is
greater. This improves measurement
accuracy in both daytime and night
time soundings. Second, an algorithm
was added to correct the effects
of solar radiation during daytime
Both solar radiation and time
lag correction algorithms have the
biggest impact in measurements
taken in high humidity conditions in
the upper troposphere, at altitudes
of approximately ten to fifteen kilometers. Thanks to the improvements,
humidity profile is now enhanced
and fine structures of clouds can be
In addition to the humidity measurement improvements, the solar
radiation correction of the temperature measurement was finetuned as
well. The solar radiation table, which
is used to compensate for the effect
of solar radiation on temperature
measurement, was changed so that
it now takes better into account the
sensor’s movements in different
sounding riggings and ascent rates.
A day-time sounding profile from Malaysia, showing the effects of the improved algorithms on
the humidity and temperature measurements.
Upgraded Software
Available by End of 2010
All changes described above were
made on the sounding system algorithms, and the Vaisala Radiosonde
RS92 itself remains unchanged.
The upgraded software version will
be available to customers by the
end of the year, and all the modifications made will be reported in
detail on Vaisala’s data continuity
website at the same time.
For those interested to study
the effects of the modifications by
themselves, soundings can be done
with the old algorithms also after
having upgraded to the new software
Further information:
184/2010 17
Stable Incubator pH
Reduces Potential
Stress to Embryos
US fertility clinic monitors carbon dioxide
concentration to maintain specific pH
environment in its embryo incubators.
Boston IVF is one of the most experienced fertility clinics in the United
States. It has assisted with more
than 30,000 pregnancies since 1986,
including several “firsts” in its region,
such as the first pregnancy from a
donor egg, first baby resulting from
injection of a sperm into an egg, and
first birth resulting from a frozen egg.
Boston IVF’s history of successful outcomes is supported by its
world-class laboratory and research
program and its long association with
Harvard Medical School in assisted
reproductive technology and in vitro
fertilization (IVF) research. Today, all
ten of Boston IVF’s directors and staff
physicians hold faculty positions at
Harvard Medical School.
Vaisala GM70 is used to verify the
CO2 level in incubators.
18 184/2010
Boston IVF manages their embryo
culturing and handling processes
meticulously to simulate the ideal
in vivo environment that causes
the least stress to the embryo and
produces the most-wanted result –
Critical Days for
Embryo Cultivation
Boston IVF practices strict lab
protocols during the critical window
of fertilization, embryo cultivation,
and embryo transfer. (See sidebar.)
During this process, the embryo is
contained in a droplet of nutrient
solution and placed in a culture dish.
A layer of oil is added to cover the
nutrient solution as a buffer from
external variables. The culture dish
is placed in an incubator programmed to maintain the specified
environment optimal for embryo
The three most important variables are temperature, humidity, and
pH. Temperature is measured and
maintained by the incubator’s thermostat, an independent thermostat,
and the incubator’s heating system.
Humidity is maintained by keeping
a pan partially filled with water that
is visually inspected daily. Unlike
temperature and humidity, pH is
measured and regulated indirectly by
monitoring and adjusting the concentration of carbon dioxide.
According to Pam LeGrow,
Boston IVF Embryology Supervisor,
pH is the most difficult to control.
“We need to maintain a very
narrow range of pH. It needs to be
maintained at 7.2 to 7.3 for optimal
growth. The pH level is obtained
by regulating the concentration of
carbon dioxide.”
CO2 and pH have an inverse
relationship; as CO2 concentration
decreases, pH increases. “We need
the pH levels to be as specific as we
can get. That means we need the CO2
concentration to be specific too,”
LeGrow adds.
Boston IVF used various CO2
portable measurement devices in the
“Gas analyzers using fluids can
be very subjective. The fluid can
go bad quickly and the reading can
be way off. We also tried a digital
infrared measurement device from a
local company, but the units required
a lot of calibration, and when we
contacted them with our questions
and problems, they provided poor
service,” LeGrow says.
Less Calibration Results
in More Stable pH
Boston IVF sought to improve the
accuracy and reliability of its CO2
measurement devices – and switched
to the Vaisala CARBOCAP® Hand-Held
Carbon Dioxide Meter GM70.
“The Vaisala staff visited, provided great detail, and demonstrated
the units. They’ve instructed us and
shared their expertise. We’re now
using two Vaisala GM70s with pumps
for our 20 incubators,” LeGrow says,
“Before we started using the
GM70s, we were making unnecessary
calibrations that produced unwanted
fluctuations and potential stress to
the embryos. But now, because the
daily readings are so consistent with
the GM70s, we calibrate less. That’s
what we want, a stable environment that puts the least stress on
such as IVF labs. For technology leader
Boston IVF, switching to the Vaisala
GM70 led to less calibration of CO2
concentration in its incubators,
resulting in more stable pH levels
and less time spent by the staff
on unnecessary calibration.
The Vaisala CARBOCAP®
silicon-based, non-dispersive infrared sensor is
very stable over time
because it has a built-in
reference measurement
which helps to compensate
for the possible effects of sensor
aging and contamination. The meter
is easy to use and does not require
any calculations for pressure and
temperature compensation.
“It was rewarding for us to work
closely with Boston IVF to find a
solution for their need for accuracy,
reliability, and ease of use,” says
Steve Santoro, Vaisala Regional Sales
“What they do everyday for their
patients is so important. Everyone
wants the outcome to be the best
it can be. Vaisala delivers the most
accurate carbon dioxide sensors for
these controlled environments, so
our products can contribute to the
best-case outcome,” he concludes.
Day 0 to Day 3 in the In Vitro
Fertilization Lab at Boston IVF
Day 0 Fertilization
Sperm are added at a rate of 12,500 sperm for each female
reproductive cell – or oocyte – or one sperm is injected into one
oocyte by intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). Fertilization is
assessed 18 hours later.
Day 1 Cleavage
Embryos are separated into individual droplets of nutrient solution specifically designed for this phase of cell division, called
Accuracy When it
Matters Most
Day 2 Cleavage Assessment
Each embryo is assessed for quality and growth to 2 to 4 cells.
The accuracy and reliability of independent measurement devices is critical in highly specified and regulated
incubator and chamber applications,
Day 3: Embryo Transfer
A good quality embryo of 6 to 8 cells is transferred to a woman’s
uterus. A pregnancy test is given 11 days later.
184/2010 19
Custom Solution
across Ohio
Mack Corbin Jr. / Vice President / M.H. Corbin, Inc. / Plain City, OH, USA
Brent Cobb / Territory Sales Manager / Vaisala / Durham, NC, USA
20 184/2010
A network of 173
RWIS stations across
the state of Ohio
help make intelligent
operational decisions
for winter road
from government or commercial
weather forecasting services.
decisions on resource management
and scheduling, allowed ODOT to
overcome the fourth significant
challenge to a statewide system: user
resistance,“ Abner Johnson said.
Customizing the
Right Solution
M.H. Corbin, a supplier that specializes in integrated traffic system and
highway safety products, won the
bid to expand the system by 100
stations. M.H. Corbin partnered with
Vaisala (then NuMetrics and SSI, divisions of QTT) to provide a custom
solution to meet ODOT’s budget and
operational requirements.
The Permanent Wireless Traffic
Analyzer was selected to monitor
road surface temperature, wet/dry
conditions, vehicle count, speed, and
vehicle classification.
“The sensor didn’t require
trenching or re-trenching during
paving or repair work, which reduced
ODOT’s road construction and
maintenance costs and added valuable traffic data,“ said Johnson. The
self-contained sensor collects data
without any external sensors, loops
or tubes and uses vehicle magnetic
imaging technology to detect vehicle
count, speed and classification.
Next, the suppliers engineered
a custom solution by adapting the
Remote Processing Units (RPUs) to
cellular technology and lowering
power consumption to 230 watts
so each station could be operated
entirely by solar panels, eliminating
the need for fixed wire communications and power utility service to the
stations. This reduced installation
and operational cost barriers for the
The Wireless Pavement sensor,
wireless communications, and solar
power meant the stations could be
self-contained and lower their total
operational cost. ODOT was also able
to reduce station cost by focusing
sensing accuracy on two parameters, precipitation on the ground
and pavement temperature, and
was willing to compromise sensor
accuracy on the other parameters.
By customizing the system to meet
their operational requirements and
22 184/2010
Data Valuable to
Multiple Users
Vaisala Permanent Traffic Analyzers are
installed with each RWIS wireless station.
Photo courtesy of the Ohio Department of
budget, ODOT was able to expand
RWIS statewide on an approximately
30-mile grid.
Implementing the New
Standard Statewide
In 2005, M.H. Corbin also won the bid
to retrofit the original 66 stations to
bring all stations to the new standard
with wireless pavement sensors,
wireless RPUs, and solar panels,
along with wind turbines as a supplemental power source, having determined that Ohio has inconsistent and
inefficient solar energy during the
winter months.
Along with the technology, training of maintenance organizations
across the state was important to
successful implementation.
“The key to training is teaching
folks how to turn data into information. ODOT’s winter maintenance
goal is to provide a safe and passable
highway system. Helping front line
managers understand how RWIS
could help them make intelligent
The RWIS data is shared and monitored by maintenance operations in all
of Ohio’s 88 counties. Typical winter
storm conditions can change in as
little as 30 miles and move at 30 to 35
miles per hour. Maintenance garages
across the state have access to RWIS’
near real-time conditions, as well as
ODOT contracted weather forecasts
and reports, alerts, and blogs through
its internally developed website. These tools help
managers monitor storm conditions
and plan their anti-icing operations
ODOT’s RWIS has gained support
from other government agencies
and departments and has increased
its value as a year-round resource.
Resurfacing and road repair operations check pavement temperatures
as part of their chip sealing, mill and
fill and overlay efforts. Wind direction and wind speed are important
factors in maintenance operations
such as herbicidal spraying, bridge
painting and highway striping.
The Ohio Emergency Management
Agency includes RWIS in response
planning for severe weather such as
tornados and blizzards and planning
related to Ohio’s two nuclear power
plants. ODOT’s Office of Innovation
uses vehicle counts from RWIS stations as a supplement to their array of
automated traffic recorders for traffic
data required for federal funding.
The system has also created a
valuable link between ODOT and
partnering governmental agencies.
By lowering costs, being innovative,
and working for support and cooperation, ODOT now has a snow and
ice optimization process that helps
it efficiently reach its goal of safe and
passable roads statewide.
e Sign
to slow
down in
Saving Lives
and Money
Ben Brown / Sales Manager / Vaisala / Birmingham, UK
Using established technology in new ways helps
improve road safety without major investments.
The global financial crisis is forcing
both public and private sectors to
look for more creative solutions to
existing problems. Despite stringent
public sector budget cuts, local road
authorities and public bodies still
need to get on with managing their
networks and striving for performance improvement.
In Europe, the member nations
have agreed to reduce road casualties in the European Union by 50
percent by 20201. At the same time in
the UK, the budgets of local authority
road safety teams are being cut by
more than 25 percent. This means
that road safety engineers are looking
for new, cost effective ways to deliver
accident reduction targets, and
Vaisala has stepped up to satisfy that
demand with new Real Time Warning
Systems (RTWS) in Bridgend, Wales
and on the A2 in Kent.
Variable Message
Signs Warn Drivers
of Flooding and
Reduced Visibility
The hazard at Bridgend is a section of
dual carriageway, which is susceptible
to flooding during periods of wet
weather. The long term solution would
be to restructure the drainage in the
surrounding embankment and under
the carriageway, a project with costs
running into several millions of euros.
The warning system installed by
Vaisala comprises a Vaisala Remote
Road Surface State Sensor DSC111,
which monitors the road surface and
sends an alarm to a Variable Message
Sign warning drivers to slow down.
The sign is located 200 meters in
advance of the hazard.
In Kent, the danger is caused by
reduced visibility. Vaisala installed
a series of three Vaisala Present
Weather Detector PWD12s and one
fully equipped Vaisala Road Weather
Station to monitor visibility, with a
Variable Message Sign at either end
of the hazardous stretch to warn
drivers when dangerous conditions
are present.
Both of these systems are connected back to the data centre in
Birmingham where data is quality
checked and the integrity of the
system guaranteed.
Using Vaisala’s established
technology in new ways has given
highways engineers another tool in
their road safety tool box. Vaisala’s
expertise enables them to reduce
accidents, deaths and serious injuries at locations where they have
previously been limited to traditional
ineffective or high cost solutions.
For more information or to
discuss the above-mentioned
system in more detail please
Bridgend project
Kent A2 project
article.cfm?recordID=18094> ,
Thursday 22 July 2010
184/2010 23
Briefly noted Briefly noted Briefly noted Briefly noted
FAA Ordered Vaisala
AviMet® RVR Systems
Following their approval of Vaisala
AviMet® PC-Based Runway Visual
Range (RVR) system for air traffic
control use late last year, the US
Federal Aviation Administration
(FAA) procured a $2.7 million order
of the systems under the existing
contract. The order includes 16 Basic
RVR systems and the associated
Runway Visual Range is a calculated assessment of the distance
that a pilot can see down a runway.
Prevailing weather conditions have
the most impact on RVR, but ambient
light levels and runway light settings
also play an important part in the
equation. In addition to having an
obvious impact on flight safety, RVR
assessment also has an impact on
airport capacity as runways can be
safely kept open longer under diminishing weather conditions.
Vaisala’s RVR system is a PCbased solution that provides fully
automated runway visual range
assessment and reporting. The
primary users of the system are air
traffic controllers who access RVR
data through a display application,
also developed by Vaisala.
Vaisala Road Weather
Information Systems to Five
New York Area Airports
The Port Authority of New York and
New Jersey and Vaisala signed a $5
million agreement for road weather
information systems and weather
data on August. As per the agreement, Vaisala delivers Road Weather
Information Systems (RWIS) equipment, lightning detection, weather
forecasting, software and data services, and 10-year maintenance services to all five airports operated by
the Port Authority – John F. Kennedy,
LaGuardia, Newark, Teterboro and
Stewart International.
The solution offered by Vaisala is
designed to provide the tools needed
to maximize winter maintenance
24 184/2010
resources and minimize chemical
usage at the airports. In addition, it
is a long-term solution for weather
monitoring, including weather forecasting and real-time data.
“The integration of Vaisala and
Quixote Transportation Technologies, acquired by Vaisala in December 2009, allows us to provide a very
comprehensive offering, the latest
technologies and superior services.
This customized solution will help
maximize air travel safety, minimize
delays, and promote cost-efficient
operations,” Antero Jarvinen, head of
Vaisala’s Roads segment, commented
on the agreement.
Briefly noted Briefly noted Briefly noted Briefly noted
Carbon Dioxide and
Temperature Transmitter
for HVAC Control
Vaisala has introduced a new transmitter for heating, ventilation and
air-conditioning (HVAC) applications.
The Vaisala CARBOCAP® Carbon
Dioxide and Temperature Transmitter GMW116 – a compact-size, wallmounted, dual-parameter transmitter
– is ideal for ventilation control in all
types of occupied spaces including
those with round-the-clock occupancy, such as hospitals, residential
buildings and retirement homes.
The GMW116 incorporates a
Vaisala CARBOCAP® silicon-based
NDIR sensor, which has advanced
single-beam dual wavelenght measurement with no moving parts. The
excellent performance of the sensor
results largely from stable reference
provided by an electrically tunable
Fabry-Perot Interferometer. It is accurate and durable, and has excellent
long-term stability, which decreases
the need for maintenance.
Further information: Completely Renewed
Vaisala launched a thoroughly
revamped new website in August.
Not only does the website have a
new look and feel, but it also has
a completely renewed approach
designed to provide a more customer-oriented online experience.
One of the most notable new
features is a Quicklinks tool that
provides direct access to
topical highlights and other
essential information per
interest and measurement
area. The tool is open on
the home page, but it
is also available on the
left side of the page on
every subpage throughout the site.
Contacting sales,
services and technical
support has been
made as quick and
easy as possible,
and tools such as the Vaisala Product
Advisor have been incorporated into
the site. The Product Advisor helps
find the right instrument for every
need by comparing the key features
of Vaisala’s industrial measurement
products (
Feedback on the new website
and its functionalities is welcome
and always appreciated – please feel
free to send your comments to info@ We also invite you to
join Vaisala on Facebook and Twitter,
and to subscribe to our YouTube
184/2010 25
Briefly noted Briefly noted Briefly noted Briefly noted
Enhanced High Current Winter
Lightning Detection for the Benefit
of Energy and Power Industries
Electric power transmission systems
depend increasingly on lightning
location information in the design,
monitoring and maintenance of their
operations. High current lightning
strokes are a significant threat to the
dependability of electric power transmission, because they can do severe
damage to power lines. Being able to
detect and locate these events means
savings in both time and money as
the fault locations can be found more
quickly, and electricity can be rerouted to a different path.
In Japan, lightning events along
the coast of the Sea of Japan during
the winter months emit particularly
different waveforms than the majority of other lightning events, which
makes them hard to detect or classify
properly. To address this problem,
Vaisala has worked together with
Tohoku Electric Power Company and
Sankosha Corporation to develop
improved lightning sensor software.
The result of the joint R&D effort
is the Vaisala Thunderstorm CG
26 184/2010
Enhanced Lightning Sensor LS7001,
which delivers double the detection
accuracy of high peak current winter
lightning discharges compared to
older sensors.
New Parameters
to Detect Different
The significant improvement in the
high amplitude detection performance was achieved by studying
electromagnetic waveforms generated by winter lightning and then
developing new parameters for their
detection. The LS7001 is able to
continuously sample and process
detected signals eliminating the dead
time problems of previous sensor
generations. Enhanced self-test and
calibration capabilities permit the
simulation of more complex waveforms and help achieve a significant
improvement in stroke time measurements.
As a part of the cooperative
research project, a six sensor
network of LS7001 sensors was
deployed in the Tohoku region
during the 2009/2010 winter lightning season. Data from Lightning
Electromagnetic Pulse (LEMP)
recording equipment operated by
Tohoku Electric Power Company and
information from lightning caused
failures in Tohoku’s transmission line
systems demonstrated significant
improvements in lightning detection
The project will continue through
the 2010/2011 winter lightning
season. The algorithm updates
employed in the reprocessing will
be implemented in sensor software,
which will be downloadable into
most existing LS sensors, making
improved detection performance
available for energy and power industries around the world.
Briefly noted Briefly noted Briefly noted Briefly noted
Vilho Väisälä Awards for
Outstanding Research
Papers Granted
Professor Dr. Vilho Väisälä Awards
were again granted in September.
The 22nd Professor Dr. Vilho Väisälä
Award for Outstanding Research
Paper was awarded to Pamela
Heinselman, David Priegnitz, Kevin
Manross, Travis Smith and Richard
Adams from the US National Oceanic
and Atmospheric Administration
(NOAA) for their paper “Rapid
Sampling of Severe Storms by the
National Weather Radar Testbed
Phased Array Radar.”
The 3rd Professor Dr. Vilho
Väisälä Award for the Development
and Implementation of the Instruments and Methods of Observation
was granted to Emmanuele Vuerich,
Claudia Monesi, Luca G. Lanza, Luigi
Stagi and Eckhard Lanzinger for their
paper “WMO Intercomparison of
Rainfall Intensity Gauges”.
The awards aim to encourage
and stimulate interest in research in
the field of environmental measurement instruments and observation
methods. The Professor Dr. Vilho
Väisälä Award for the Development
and Implementation of Instruments
and Methods of Observation focuses
specifically on encouraging meteorological instrument work in developing countries and countries with
economies in transition.
Both awards are granted biannually in connection with the Technical Conference on Meteorological
and Environmental Instruments and
Methods of Observation (TECO)
and the Exhibition of Meteorological
Instruments Related Equipment and
Services (METEOREX), and carry a
cash prize of $10,000. The awards,
sponsored by Vaisala, are administrated by the World Meteorological
Organization (WMO).
Vaisala Weather Measurements
at Shanghai World Expo
Vaisala’s measurement systems
are showcased at the Shanghai
World Expo as a part of an integrated weather measurement site.
The systems measure a number of
parameters, including cloud height
and cover, present weather and
Situated close to the Italian
pavilion, the site monitors weather
conditions at the Expo Park and
provides precise updated informa-
tion for weather forecasts during the
exhibition. The World Expo continues until
the end of October.
184/2010 27
Briefly noted Briefly noted Briefly noted Briefly noted
International Science Camp
Brought Young Technology
Enthusiasts to Vaisala
One of the Millennium
Technology Prize laureates, Sir Richard Friend,
visited Vaisala together
with the MY Campers
and gave an impromptu
presentation on his
research. He was also
chosen to release the
weather balloon during an introductory
sounding organized
during the day.
Millennium Youth Camp (MY Camp)
is a new endeavor that aims to
increase young people’s interest in
natural sciences and technology
as well as to promote study and
working opportunities in Finland.
In early June, the camp brought 30
sixteen to nineteen year old technology enthusiasts from 14 different
countries to Helsinki. Vaisala was one
of the camp’s corporate partners,
and hosted a group of students for
a day.
During the week, the students
had an opportunity to
network with
each other as
well as with
Finnish companies, organizations and top
scientists. The
program consisted of lectures,
workshops and
visits, in addition to
which the Campers worked on projects that aimed to solve real-world
problems in the fields of climate
change, applied mathematics, ICT,
water, renewable energy and renewable natural resources.
MY Camp was scheduled to coincide with the awarding of Millennium
Technology Prize, Finland’s tribute
to the developers of life-enhancing
technological innovations. Awarded
every second year, the Millennium
Technology Prize is the world’s
largest technology award.
The winner of the 2010 main prize
was Professor Michael Grätzel from
the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale
de Lausanne for his innovation of
third generation dye-sensitized solar
cells – known as Grätzel cells – that
can be used in electricity-generating
windows and low-cost solar panels,
for example.
Further information:
The project of the group hosted by Vaisala – John Chen, Paula
Hietala, Kati Venho, Andra Oranasu, Matthew McAteer and Nkosikhona Bulana – focused on assessing the methods of reducing carbon
dioxide levels in the atmosphere (poster available online at www.
Vaisala Weather Radars to India
Vaisala and the India Meteorological Department signed a contract in
August for the delivery of two dual
polarization weather radars and
three-year maintenance services. The
radars will be installed in New Delhi
and Jaipur.
“Vaisala opened a liason office in
New Delhi in summer 2008, and our
hard work in the region is now starting to bear fruit. Having the IMD as a
28 184/2010
customer is an important opening for
us, and a sign that we have chosen
the right strategy for the region. The
ability to serve customers in their
own local market is a strong competitive advantage, especially when
combined with Vaisala’s pioneering
product and service offering,” Martti
Husu, Executive Vice President,
Meteorology, commented on the
Briefly noted Briefly noted Briefly noted Briefly noted
Humidity Seminar
Series Continues
Vaisala’s series of humidity seminars
continues in the fall. The one-day,
free of charge seminars aim to give
a comprehensive understanding
of humidity and the measurement
principles related to it. Topics will
cover fundamental humidity theory
and the associated parameters, but
also the practical aspects of technology, good measurement practice and
During the past spring and early
summer, five seminars were held in
Finland, France and Germany. The
sessions attracted altogether close
to 200 attendees and received very
good feedback; discussion on humidity theory in general was especially
appreciated. Each seminar was
headed by a Vaisala humidity expert
– Jan Grönblad in Vantaa, Finland;
Senja Paasimaa in Oulu, Finland; Ulla
Mattila in Jyväskylä, Finland; Bernard
Sounie and David Reignier in Lyon,
France; and Berndt Weber, Matthias
Lorenzen and Jörg Ruhl in Uhingen,
Details on upcoming seminars
are available at www.vaisala.
“Thank you for a great
seminar. It is a rare
opportunity to listen
to a true expert, there
are few who arrange
this sort of seminars
anymore. I have also got
lots of useful tips to my
daily work.”
– Attendee at the Vantaa seminar
50 M€ Research Program
on Environmental
Monitoring in Finland
The Finnish Strategic Centre for
Science, Technology and Innovation
for Energy and Environment, CLEEN
Oy, has launched an ambitious
five year, 50 M€ research program
on environmental monitoring and
services. The program is executed by
a wide cross-functional consortium,
including both leading technology
providers and research institutes.
Vaisala is the program’s the largest
industry contributor.
The program is called Measurement, Monitoring and Environmental
Assessment (MMEA), and its objective is to create new tools, standards
and methods for environmental
measurement, monitoring and decision support. The program promotes
new applications and services based
on environmental data to improve
the energy and material efficiency
of infrastructures and industrial
An important part of the program
is the MMEA Testbed, which will
integrate data from several environmental measurement networks in
one portal to be analyzed, modeled
and used as raw material for the new
environmental services.
184/2010 29
Briefly noted Briefly noted Briefly noted Briefly noted
“It is rare to get to work
on such a comprehensive project during an
internship, and learn so
much in such a short
time about the products,
strategy and operations
of the company.”
– 2010 Giant Leap Trainee
Vaisala Giant Leap – Great Success
for Three Years Running
For the past three years, Vaisala has
hired students to work as interns
in a variety of projects during the
summer months. The program
– called Vaisala Giant Leap – has
established itself as a very attractive
alternative among the internship
opportunities available for students
in Finland.
30 184/2010
Last summer, over 700 students
applied to participate in the program.
In the end, 23 were selected to work
on both highly scientific development projects as well as more
hands-on general projects such as
the possible uses of eLearning in
customer training and streamlining product launch processes. The
program is targeted at students who
actively pursue a university level
degree, demonstrate intellectual
curiosity, and are highly motivated
by and interested in Vaisala’s business and customers – quoting the
program slogan, students are encouraged to “come as you are, as long as
you’re curious”.
Briefly noted Briefly noted Briefly noted Briefly noted
Upcoming Industry Events
Tekniikka 2010
Energia 10
ISPE Boston
Symposium on Air Quality Measurement
Methods and Technology
Helsinki, Finland / 4-8 October 2010
Jyväskylä, Finland / 5-7 October 2010
Foxboro, MA, USA / 6 October 2010
Beijing, China / 26-29 October 2010
Tampere, Finland / 26-28 October 2010
Georgia Airports Conference
Los Angeles, CA, USA / 2 November 2010
Snow and Ice Colloquim
Edinburgh, Scotland / 3-4 November 2010
Sao Paulo, Brazil / 10-12 November 2010
Savannah, GA, USA / 13-15 October 13 2010
Mississauga, Ontario, CAN / 19-20 October 2010
Road Expo Scotland 2010
ISA Brazil
National Harbour, MD, USA / 24-27 October
China Gas 2010
ITS World Congress
OSEA 2010
Busan, South Korea / 25-29 October 2010
Automotive Testing Expo
Novi, MI, USA / 26-28 October 2010
Interoute & Ville Expo 2010
Metz, France / 26-28 October 2010
Chengdu, China / 10-12 November 2010
Suntec, Singapore / 30 November - 3 December
AMS 20100
Seattle, WA, USA / 23-27 January
Full list is available at
Contact the Vaisala News team
Sanna Nyström
For subscriptions, cancellations,
feedback and changes of address,
please contact the Vaisala News team
by sending an email to
184/2010 31
North America
Asia and Pacific
Vaisala Oyj
Vaisala Inc.
Vaisala KK
Vaisala Oyj
Malmö Office
Drottninggatan 1 D
S-212 11 Malmö
Vaisala Oyj
Stockholm Office
Johanneslundsvägen 2, 1tr
S-194 61 Upplands Väsby
Vaisala GmbH
Bonn Office
Adenauerallee 15
D-53111 Bonn
Vaisala GmbH
Hamburg Office
Schnackenburgallee 41
D-22525 Hamburg
Vaisala GmbH
Uhingen Office
Bahnhofstr. 3
73066 Uhingen
Vaisala Ltd
Boston Office 10-D Gill Street
Woburn, MA 01801
Vaisala Inc.
Boulder Operations
194 South Taylor Avenue
Louisville, CO, 80027
Vaisala Inc.
Columbus Office
4249 Diplomacy Drive
Columbus, OH 43228
Vaisala Inc.
Durham Office
2880 Slater Road, Suite 200
Morrisville, NC 27560
Vaisala Inc.
Houston Office
1120 NASA Road, Suite 220-E
Houston, TX 77058
Vaisala Inc.
Minneapolis Operations
6300 34th Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55450
Tokyo Office
42 Kagurazaka 6-Chome
Tokyo 162-0825
Vaisala China Ltd
Beijing Office
Floor 2, EAS Building
No. 21, Xiao Yun Road
Dongsanhuan Beilu, Chaoyang District
Beijing 100027
Vaisala Shanghai
6F 780 Cailun Lu
Pudong New Area
201203 Shanghai
Vaisala China Ltd
Shenzhen Branch
1-17B, China Phoenix Building
ShenNan Avenue, Futian District
Shenzhen 518026
Vaisala Pty Ltd
Melbourne Office
3 Guest Street
Hawthorn, VIC 3122
Vaisala Oyj
Birmingham Operations
Vaisala House
349 Bristol Road
Birmingham B5 7SW
Vaisala Inc.
San Jose Office
6980 Santa Teresa Blvd., Suite 203
San Jose, CA 95119-1393
Regional Office Malaysia
Level 9, West Block
Wisma Selangor Dredging
142-C Jalan Ampang
50450 Kuala Lumpur
Vaisala Ltd
Vaisala Inc.
Vaisala Oyj
Newmarket Office
Unit 9, Swan Lane, Exning
Newmarket, Suffolk CB8 7FN
Vaisala SAS
Marseille Office
2, rue de Beausset
F-13001 Marseille
Vaisala SAS
Paris Office
2, rue Stéphenson
F-78181 Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines
St. Louis Office
1862 Craig Park Court
St. Louis, MO 63146
Vaisala Inc.
Tucson Operations
2705 East Medina Road
Tucson, AZ 85756
Vaisala Inc.
Westford Office
7A Lyberty Way
Westford, MA 01886
Vaisala Canada Inc.
100-13775 Commerce Parkway
Richmond, BC V6V 2V4
Liaison office in India
Block E - 7/8, 2nd floor
Vasant Vihar
New Delhi 110057
Middle East
Vaisala Oyj
Regional Office United Arab Emirates
Khalifa Al Naboodah Building, 1st Floor
Sheikh Zayed Road, Dubai
C210065EN 2010-10
P.O. Box 26
FI-00421 Helsinki
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