A personal weather station is a set of weather measuring instruments operated by a private individual, club, association, or even business (where obtaining and distributing weather data is not a part of the entity's business operation). The quality and number of instruments can vary widely, and placement of the instruments, so important to obtaining accurate, meaningful, and comparable data, can also be very variable.
Typical instrumentation includes an anemometer and wind vane, thermometer, hygrometer (for obtaining relative humidity), barometer, and rain gauge. More sophisticated stations may also measure the ultraviolet index, solar radiation, leaf wetness, soil moisture, soil temperature, water temperature in ponds, lakes, creeks, or rivers, and occasionally other data. Today's personal weather stations also typically involve a digital console that provides readouts of the data being collected. These consoles may interface to a personal computer where data can be displayed, stored, and uploaded to web sites or data ingestion/distribution systems.
Personal weather stations may be operated solely for the enjoyment and education of the owner, but many personal weather station operators also share their data with others, either by manually compiling data and distributing it, or through use of the internet or amateur radio. The Citizens weather observer program is one such, and this data submitted through use of software, a personal computer, and internet connection (or amateur radio) is utilized by the National Weather Service when generating forecast models, and by many other entities as well. Each weather station submitting data to CWOP will also have a individual web page that depicts the data submitted by that station. The Weather Underground is another popular destination for the submittal and sharing of data with others around the world. As with CWOP, each station submitting data to The Weather Underground will have a unique web pagedisplaying their submitted data.
Many personal weather station operators also post their current and historical data on personal weather web pages as well.
Popular manufacturers of weather stations appropriate for individual users include:
Some creators of software for interfacing to personal weather stations (and in many cases, for uploading data to various entities mentioned above as well as to personal weather station web sites) include:
Places where data collected by a personal weather station may be submitted electronically and thence shared with others worldwide via the internet:
Resources for the current or potential personal weather station owner/operator: