Project receives GNSS Prizes

A project log for Team TAHMO

Develop robust and affordable advanced sensing capability for 20,000 weather stations in Africa (lightning, precip water, ...)

nick-van-de-giesenNick van de Giesen 10/21/2015 at 12:560 Comments

At the start of the project, we included the idea to include a high-precision consumer grade GPS receiver. The idea was not just that it could provide synchronized time stamps for the lightning sensors but also could say something about atmospheric moisture content. The technology has been around for some time but until now required relatively expensive ($50,000) geoscientific ground stations. Consumer-grade GPS receivers have improved so much over the past decade that we can achieve sufficient accuracy to determine precipitable water content of the atmospheric column. The only problem is that they only detect one frequency whereas one would like to receive two frequencies in order to correct for ionospheric delays. By regionally modeling the ionosphere using a few existing geoscientific ground stations in the region, we could get by with consumer GPS receivers alone. This idea, to be implemented around Lake Victoria, has won not one but two prizes in the European Satellite Navigation Competition 2015. We won both the special prize for academia (71 entries) but also the national entry for the Netherlands. A summary of the project idea can be found here. A more compelte description is available here.

This map shows the present TAHMO stations around Lake Victoria, which will be used to install the lightning sensors and GPS receivers.