Make sure to finish initial setup and configure the devices through the iOS or Android mobile app before installing the Tempest device outdoors.
The first step in siting is to survey your property and take careful consideration of where and how you will mount your Tempest. Siting and installation locations can have a major influence on data integrity. Accuracy of measurements is determined by the quality of the instrumentation but the data you collect is largely affected by where you locate your equipment. We encourage you to consider your observational needs when deciding where to mount your Tempest device.
- Find a location with as much exposure to wind, rain and sun as possible (a fence post, shed or on the roof). The Tempest device needs exposure to direct sunlight to remain charged. Do not site the device in a shady location or the solar panels will not be able to keep the battery charged.
- Avoid close proximity to surfaces (buildings, walls, the ground) and unnatural moisture and heat sources and sinks (exhaust vents, central air units, active chimneys)
- Make sure the structure used for the mount is sturdy and does not shake in strong winds. For example, a flag pole with a flag waving in the winds will transfer vibrations to the haptic rain sensor and trigger false rain readings.
While it is unlikely owners will need to routinely inspect or perform maintenance on the outdoor device, we recommend you do not install it in an inaccessible location.
The Tempest device can maintain a connection to the Hub up to 1000 ft (300 m) away with direct line of sight. Obstructions like walls and ceilings will reduce the signal strength as well as inclement weather. You can make sure your Tempest device is getting a good signal with the Hub by viewing the RSSI value in the app, go to settings > stations > select station > status. An RSSI close to 0 indicates a great connection while weaker connections are in the range of -80 to -100.
Orientation & Alignment
The Tempest device should be mounted upright and as level as possible for accurate wind readings.
Proper alignment is crucial for accurate wind direction and exposure of the panels to the sun for solar charging. The blue arrow on the side of the device should face towards geographic or true north and the solar panels aligned south for optimal exposure to the sun. If your station is in the southern hemisphere, face the arrow south with panels aligned north. Tempest devices configured in the southern hemisphere will automatically receive a 180° wind direction correction through the software.
Geographic or true north/south is not the same as magnetic north/south. A compass will point towards the magnetic poles. Geographic north/south is the true center point of a hemisphere and is the basis for referencing wind direction. A compass can help you align your Tempest but you need to adjust the compass reading with your magnetic declination. An easy way to align your device accurately is to find a north or south reference point on the map when locating your station and use that to align the arrow head. For example, the side of your house, or any landmark you can see that gives you a clue to a known cardinal direction.
Mounting Hardware and Installation
Tempest Mounting Attachments
The Tempest system kit does not come with hardware for installation. There are two base attachments included with the Tempest kit, a flat base (standard 1/4"-20 thread & keyhole slot) and a pole mount (fits a nominal 1" mast).
- The pole mount is designed to fit a standard “one-inch” nominal pole (outer diameter = 1.315 inches, or 33.4 mm) as well as a 1.25 in (32 mm) outer diameter pole, and anything in between. You can find a length of mast at your local hardware store or order one online.
- The flat base mount attaches to a horizontal surface via 1/4"-20 threaded insert (standard camera mount) or the keyhole slot over a screw or nail.
Need some simple installation ideas?
Check out some easy Installation Examples!
More info on installations and recommended height above ground...
- About 4ft above the surface is adequate for good temperature and humidity readings.
- If measuring wind speed and direction is important to you, you would want cleaner wind fetch. About 6 to 10ft off the ground is better if the surrounding area is clear and open. Mounting above any nearby obstacles is better for ideal wind readings but only do so if installation is feasible and easily accessible. Don't worry about mounting above a roof line or tree line if it's too much effort. Professional anemometers are sited at standard 10m height (~33ft above ground) and have clean wind fetch (no obstacles at that height) for 10x the height distance, e.g. no obstructions at 10m height for 100m. It is almost impossible for a home weather station owner to meet these professional installation standards.
- For more ideal rain readings, you would want to site any all-in-one weather station low to the ground in a clear area, away from trees, etc. For a higher degree of accuracy, mounting on a sturdy structure, lower to the ground is especially important for Tempest's haptic rain sensor, which detects and quantifies rain from vibrations.
Here's a link to the CWOP guide that outlines general siting recommendations for personal weather stations: https://www.weather.gov/media/epz/mesonet/CWOP-Siting.pdf
The CWOP siting guide is a great reference, but for the vast majority of home users it is simply not possible to meet each guideline (especially being 100 ft from any concrete and no closer than 4x the height of any trees or buildings). That is okay! Your Tempest system is not a climate research reference station. We encourage you to consider your unique siting challenges/opportunities and observational needs when deciding where to mount your Tempest. Do not be discouraged if your options aren’t ideal for every parameter. A common saying among observational meteorologists is that “the more you know about an observation, the more useful it is”, so we do encourage all users to keep their metadata accurate and up to date. Doing so will improve your Tempest system’s ability to provide you with the best weather data for your location.