The Second Generation Kunlun Automated Weather Station

We built a new automated weather station called "The Second Generation Kunlun Automated Weather Station (KLAWS-2G)" in 2014. It is a 15 meter tall mast with 10 temperature sensors, 7 anemometers, 1 barometer and 1 humidity sensor. The main goal to build such an instrument is to monitoring the long-term astronomical site condition at Dome A.

It is always very difficult to make electronic devices which are exposed in an extremely cold environment, moreover without any manned-maintenance.  Unfortunately, this is true at Dome A. The original AWS built in 2011 had fallen down after working for about 9 months. Therefore, we carefully make and test our new AWS. Firstly, we built a prototype AWS and test it in Mohe last winter. The sensors we bought could work when the temperature is at least as low as -45°C. Then, we bought all the sensors (the sensors are very expensive, e.g. 12670 RMB per anemometer, we must test it first), made cables and integrated the data acquiring models. We test all the parts of KLAWS-2G at Xinglong for a month. Finally, we did low temperature experiment in Nanjing. With help of our active heating system, the electronics could work when the ambient temperature was -80°C.  


We sent KLAWS-2G to Shanghai for shipping it to Antarctica by Xuelong in October 2014. On Jan 12th 2015, our colleagues who participated the 31rd Chinese Antarctic Research Expedition Team had installed it successfully at Dome A (the rightmost mast in above photo). Soon, the data grabbing programming started, and sent the data back in every 15 minutes. After the expedition team left on Jan 23rd 2015, KLAWS-2G worked finely without any problems (excepted the heating system seems not to be working, but I am not worried about it. This is  because when I did low temperature in Nanjing I found the electronics could start when the temperature was -45°C and the temperature in the electronic box could be kept about 40°C higher than outside temperature by only the heat emitting by the devices in the electronic box). All the data from KLAWS-2G are illustrated here

I would like to thank my colleagues help me making, testing and installing KLAWS-2G. Wish it works for many years!