Cloud Detection - Part Four

This post follows on quite quickly (for me at least!) from my last one regarding my latest tests and reflections on environmental issues with some thoughts about how to measure ground temperatures in a reliable way. I am also going to take a look at the difficulties I might face in trying to automatically interpret cloud cover the whole year through. Finally I am going to share some thoughts on how I might approach packaging the system for deployment in the open air, and what to do about supplying power and communications.

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Cloud Detection - Part Three

Since the last part in this series I have continued to conduct experiments comparing and contrasting the two variants of MLX90614, the wide field of view BAA and the considerably more focused BCF. Whilst undertaking these 'in the field' tests I have also come up against a few, what you might call, environmental problems which need addressing before I can move from the prototype phase to the implementation phase.

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Cloud Detection - Part Two

This is the next installment on the cloud detection project. This time I am starting to test out hooking up an MLX90614 or two to an Arduino and try out pointing it to the sky in the aim of get some interesting results.

Just as a friendly warning: calculations done here are rough and ready - don't write to me to say that the cat died because of some experiment based on anything shown here. It's all at your own risk, however, just remember the great Mr Churchill's wise words:

The greatest lesson in life is to know that even fools are right sometimes.

With that in mind, onwards with the experiments...

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Cloud Detection - Part One

This project has its roots in a discussion I had a while back with a friend who is a keen amateur astronomer. He had been complaining to me about how he thought that there was a distinct lack of cloud free nights in our corner of Northern Lincolnshire. In fact, he suggested, the weather was so poor that it was hardly worth having a telescope at all.

Okay, so maybe that last sentence was a little exaggeration, but his argument certainly got me thinking - how many clear nights are there in the year? Being a bit of a skeptic, I am sure that the night sky is clear on many more nights than my friend suggests.

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