What is the difference between SayWeather Pro2 and SayWeather PRO+ ?
SayWeather™ Pro2 and SayWeather PRO+ are each built on the same reliable hardware. SayWeather PRO+ is an enhanced version of SayWeather Pro2, that is, the PRO+ has firmware capability to process visibility and sky condition data. This enhancement enables optional reporting of visibility, present weather, cloud height (4 layers) and sky condition.
What does the included weather station look like? How accurate is it? Do you have a specification sheet for the weather stations?
Please see the weather station manufacturer's specifications for details.
SayWeather™ incorporates a Davis Vantage Pro2 with fan aspirated outdoor temperature/humidity sensor (Davis #6153) weather station. All weather stations provided with either the SayWeather Pro2 or SayWeather PRO+ include calibration certificates traceable to the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).
What maintenance is required for SayWeather?
The SayWeather system is designed for low maintenance. The outdoor weather station contains a low-cost lithium back-up cell (CR123) that typically is replaced once every 3 years. SayWeather has built-in capability to monitor weather "sensor health". This capability continuously monitors raw sensor data from the weather station and if a sensor failure occurs, the relevant weather variable is removed from the advisory and reported as "missing". Although sensor health is monitored by SayWeather, sensor accuracy is not. It is recommended that the Davis weather station is checked for sensor accuracy three times per year. Included in the SayWeather instruction manual is a procedure for checking the accuracy of wind, temperature, dew point and barometric pressure sensors. Alternatively, the Davis Pro2 outdoor sensors and barometric pressure sensor can be NIST calibrated. The barometric sensor NIST calibration service is provided by Connectsix (makers of SayWeather) and for the weather station by Davis Instruments. Please see the barometric sensor page for barometric sensor calibration options. Please see the Davis Instrument's website for information on weather station calibration. Other maintenance items include replacing the display console alkaline batteries if needed and clearing the rain-collector basket of debris.
Why use Davis weather stations?
Simply, great value! We chose Davis Instruments as our weather station providing partner because: the product is of high quality and durability; they have available parts and calibration support, they are renowned for use in commercial applications, and they have been making great products for over 50 years. They are also reasonably priced, so your weather advisory system doesn't cost a lot. Davis sells and support their weather stations worldwide.
This looks like a great capability. What do the regulations say about its use?
Using SayWeather™ is like asking an airport attendant to provide a landing advisory over the UNICOM. The difference is that SayWeather provides an AWOS-like advisory and operates, on-demand by the pilot, 24 hours a day... not just when the airport is attended. The Code of Federal Regulations, 47 CFR 87.219, addresses the use of automated systems at airports not having an operational ASOS/AWOS. Relevant frequencies are addressed under 47 CFR 87.187(y)(3), and multicom frequencies, 122.850MHz and 122.900MHz, are addressed under 47 CFR 87.237 thru 241.
The use of automated UNICOM systems is also noted in the FAA Aeronautical Information Manual 4-1-9.a.3: Many airports are now providing completely automated weather, radio check capability and airport advisory information on an automated UNICOM system. These systems offer a variety of features, typically selectable by microphone clicks, on the UNICOM frequency. Availability of the automated UNICOM will be published in the Airport/Facility Directory and approach charts.
How frequently is the weather information updated?
SayWeather™ retrieves weather from the weather station every 30 seconds and reports current information on the console's LCD display, and to the pilot over the VHF radio when queried. Wind speed and direction are reported as 2-minute averages. Gusts are reported as 10-minute peak wind speed.
How does SayWeather differ from an AWOS?
An AWOS is an Automated Weather Observation System. Weather observations made by an AWOS are derived through use of weather sensors that must meet certain specifications and must undergo regular calibration. SayWeather™ is a weather advisory system. An advisory system differs from an observation system in that its sensors are not required to meet the same specifications, or undergo the same calibration, that observation systems do. An AWOS can provide information to the National Weather Service whereas an advisory weather system does not. SayWeather uses the same algorithms that AWOS' use to process weather data and report an advisory. However, SayWeather has the benefit of allowing users to adjust certain parameters related to the processing of weather data. For example, the AWOS algorithm for reporting wind gusts indicates that gusts are only reported if they are over 14 knots, which might be too restrictive for light sport pilots. SayWeather can be user-adjusted to report gusts at any selectable threshold.
Does the SayWeather system include weather station mounting poles, tower, etc?
The user's mounting requirement are unique, so mounting poles or towers are not included in your kit. Please refer to the Davis weather station documentation for guidance on mounting your weather station. Please contact us to discuss special mounting requirements.
What does the REC-1 option do?
SayWeather™ includes a low-voltage relay contact that can be activated by a pilot in flight. When the correct number of mic-keys is received SayWeather will close the relay contact for a user-configurable period of time. This relay can be used, for example, to activate a video camera on the ground for recording a landing. Users may want to use the relay contact for other purposes, for example to open a gate or activate a warning.
I already own a Davis Vantage Pro2 weather station. Can I use that with SayWeather and get a discount on my SayWeather purchase?
Yes- or use the new weather station that comes with SayWeather™ and keep your existing one as a spare. SayWeather™ connects to a Vantage Pro2 (with fan-aspiration) weather console. If your Davis console is connected to a personal computer and that computer is used to publish weather data to wunderground.com, you will need to either disconnect the weather console data feed to the computer and connect it to SayWeather, or, purchase a second weather display console to use with SayWeather. Please contact us for pricing and to discuss configuration options.
I have a spare aviation radio. Do I really need a new one?
SayWeather™ is only compatible with the Yaesu FTA series transceivers (included with each system). We've found Yaesu FTA transceivers to be reliable, responsive, and a great value.
Can SayWeather control the lights at my airport?
Yes, any SayWeather™ system can be upgraded with several options for airport lighting. The PAL options use UL recognized relays to provide 120VAC to 277VAC control of loads 10 amps to 20 amps, depending on lighting type. The relays include integrated override switches for manual activation of airport lighting. Mic keys activate the lighting controller and the number of mic keys can be user-selected for almost any combination of control options. SayWeather also provides a unique feature - the pilot's mic keys to activate lighting is acknowledged over the VHF transceiver with an audio announcement "airport lights acknowledged". This lets the pilot know that additional keying is not required if by chance the airport is obscured or otherwise not seen by the pilot.
The PAL series controller are housed in electrical cabinets that are approved for indoor use only.
Contact SayWeather for other options.
Where can I get a sound file for my airport name, or speech in other languages?
When you purchase your SayWeather™ system, we'll contact you to customize your unit for your airport. If later, you need to make changes you can simply email firstname.lastname@example.org with your request, and we'll send you your customized sound files. You can also make your own using a variety of software tools. SayWeather uses ".wav" audio files to produce speech.
SayWeather Pro2 and SayWeather PRO+ include a two-year warranty. Are there extended warranty options?
Yes. If at any time after the two year warranty, your SayWeather unit is damaged or fails, the unit can be returned to our factory for repair. The cost for repairs is covered under our current "flat rate" repair fee policy. A loaner SayWeather unit can be made available at additional cost if needed during the repair. SayWeather™ is also available for purchase with two-year and three-year extended warranty options - please contact us for details.
Do you have a list or map of airports that have installed SayWeather?
Click this map link or click on the map below to see SayWeather installations. Click on any airport in the map to check if the airport publishes weather data to the internet. If so, a web link is provided to view real-time and historical weather data from that airport.
Do I need to pay sales tax?