The Tornado Probe project was underway long before this site was designed. Over the coming weeks I will be posting articles that discuss the original plans, prototypes (including code), and results of various tests we've done.
We are happy to announce the launch of WXOpenSource, A mission to gather scientists, meteorologists, storm chasers, programmers, and hackers to collaborate on a common interest.
There have been many attempts to create sensors that are deployed into tornadoes to measure ground and low altitude wind speeds, pressure, and other metrics. Although there has been limited success, we have failed to continuously and reliably achieve this.
The WXOpenSource project is being launched to solve this and many other similar problems in the meteorological community. Although the idea was formed while researching tornadoes, we believe the mission can be expanded into many other areas.
This project will launch a friendly community where scientists, students, government, corporations, and amateurs alike can equally brainstorm and collaborate on new methods for measuring weather and climate change. Open communication and sharing of ideas and findings will be the key to success.
Phase 1 goal was to place an arduino, the transceiver, and a large battery in a waterproof case and set the device to transmit once per second. The transmissions were to be received with another radio and an FTDI cable into a laptop.
Using the setup described above, with a Yagi antenna, 2 mile range achieved. Transmitter was placed in a ravine and receiver received a data signal at a 2 mile distance through several neighborhoods and across a power distribution area. We were able to read an incrementing counter sent by the transmitter as well as RSSI Signal strength.