Gr11 students learn weather


Grade 11 students of Kopkop College learnt about weather forecasting and disaster management activities in the country, following their visit to the National Weather Office in Port Moresby.
“The objective of the excursion is for the students to hear, observe and learn from the specialist people who work 24 hours to collect atmospheric data or weather data in order to forecast daily atmospheric conditions,” Geography teacher Jorute Rodney said.
He said the trip supplemented student knowledge on natural process and disasters, under the unit on oceanography and ocean currents circulation.
At the weather station, students learnt that data was collected and entered and directly sent to the world’s meteorologist database in Geneva, Switzerland.
PNG is part of the world’s meteorologist society on climate and weather forecast and its data was also accessed by the Asia Pacific meteorology service in Melbourne, Australia, which focused on the pacific.
The students also met meteorologist Benjamin Malai, one of PNG’s four senior and registered meteorologist/oceanographer who is recognised in Australia, Japan, USA and other participating countries.
The National Weather Office has 14 substations in PNG and 22 weather sites for collecting data for daily condition.
Currently, there are only 20 in operation, some of which are located in Momote in Manus, Gurney in Alotau, Nazab in Lae, Tokua in Rabaul and Kagamuga in Mt Hagen.

Arrival at the National Weather Service
It was a hectic day at the Weather Office.
A vessel in Bougainville had gone missing and a meeting was held between the acting executive director Jimmy Gomoga and key National Weather officers.
The Public Weather Forecaster Peter Warupi gave the students a tour around three work stations, which were for data entry, public weather forecasting and aviation forecasting.
Warupi works alongside Wartovo Horis and they are the officers responsible for giving daily weather updates and conditions.

At the work station
At work station one, officer Justine Maneu and Adolf Bessie collected daily data in 30-minute interval from 6am to 6pm, followed by an hourly interval from 7pm till 6am.
The officers usually rotate to accommodate for the night and day shift.
The data collected and entered in the daily and monthly log book and on computers include, temperature, pressure, windspeed and direction, water vapour and cloud cover.
The data is then entered and directly sent to the world’s meteorologist database in Geneva.
At work station two, officers responsible for public weather forecasting, Warupi and Horis, explained that it was there that they gave the daily weather updates to inform the public through the radio stations, newspapers and television stations.
They issue warnings and emergency messages to inform the public on any natural hazards that may come their way.
At work station three, weather officer Abraham Kondis does weather forecasting for aviation industry in PNG.
Kondis provides weather updates of daily atmospheric condition to pilots and aviation industry in PNG.
The information Kondis provides to the aviation industry involves 99.9 per cent accuracy and is used by pilots in their flights.
Questions were asked by the students regarding his work and the risks involved.

At the observation station
After touring the workstation, students were taken to the observation site where actual data and reading was collected and fed into the system.
Officer Jimmy Maneu explained how data was collected via readings conducted from 6am-7pm for every 30 minutes interval.
Readings were captured from temperature, pressure, windspeed and directions, water vapour and cloud cover at present.
There was standard information used when feeding the data into computers.
As the director quality assurance and senior forecaster, Malai later held a conferencing with the students.
He demonstrated how solar energy affected global and local weather patterns with the changing of wind system or pressure system and how air circulation cells and high and low-pressure systems work.
Malai detailed the importance of his work as a meteorologist and shared experiences of his presentations given during global seminars on climate.
He encouraged students to take on mathematics seriously and study well in science if they wanted to take meteorological study.
Malai encouraged schools to bring their students to visit the National Weather Office.