Sunday, October 21, 2012

National Weather Service Open House...

 
Took today off to just have some fun.  The Little Rock NWS was having an open house for the first time in 20 years.  Because I am such a science nerd, I went and had a wonderful time.  The crew was so kind and really explained everything that was going on.  We didn't have any severe weather, but I bet this place gets humming when we do.  Above is a picture of one of the many arrays of computers, all keeping an eye on the skies for us.

 When I went outside I wandered amongst the booths and look who I ran into!  I just had to have my picture taken with Smokey the Bear.

This is the array of rain gauges behind the NWS office.  Some of them tell how much rain you've had by the weight.  The information is sent electronically into the NWS office so that those that are working there don't have to go outside to check the gauges.
 
One of the highlights of the day was the release of a weather balloon.  It's quite amazing how quickly it goes up once released.  The meteorologists said that at maximum size, the balloon becomes about 30 feet across due to changes in pressure as it gets higher into the atmosphere.  Then, it pops.  The balloons aren't recovered by anyone at the NWS.  Instead, they are self-proclaimed "litter bugs" and hope that people that come across them will mail them back (there is a postage-paid part on the balloon so that it can just be dropped into the mailbox).

This is the tower that tracks the weather balloon.  I think it's a pretty structure.
All in all, a fabulous day!
Namaste.

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