University of Tennessee
Forest Resources AgResearch and Education Center
Programs and Research

Weather Station at the Arboretum

NOAA Weather Tower The UT Forest Resources Research and Education Center, in partnership with the Oak Ridge Office of the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration - Atmospheric Turbulence and Diffusion Division (NOAA-ATDD), is hosting the newly established weather measurements and recording station for Oak Ridge, TN. This "weather station" is located on an exposed knoll of Chestnut Ridge near the TVA Power Line corridor and is within an area of the UT Arboretum. The station location is shown on the Trail System Map and can be accessed from the Tulip Poplar and Heath Cove Trails.

ATDD's main function is to perform air quality and climate-related research directed toward issues of national and global importance. ATDD began as a Weather Bureau Special Projects research office established in 1948 under the Atomic Energy Commission sponsorship in Oak Ridge, and still serves as a source of meteorological information and expertise for the US Department of Energy and its contractors in Oak Ridge.

According to Richard Evans, Forest Resources Center and Arboretum Director, "Weather/climate information is an important variable in evaluating the performance of both native and ornamental plants, as well as environmental conditions associated with studying wildlife and plant communities. Given the mission of the Center and Arboretum in supporting a wide array of natural resources research and plant evaluation trials, having an on-site weather station is an immense asset to the faculty and students who are conducting research at this location."

At present this NOAA-ATDD weather station is instrumented to collect data on basic environmental stress factors. Over time, however, the station will be outfitted with more environmental and atmospheric data collecting instruments for broader and more elaborate measurements of environmental stress parameters. Oak Ridge NOAA-ATDD is providing on-line historic and current weather reports via their web-link NOAA-ATDD Dataviewer.

The station currently measures:

  • Air Temperature (1.5m height)
  • Relative Humidity
  • Wind Speed (10m)
  • Wind Direction (10m)
  • Surface Temperature
  • Incoming Solar Radiation
  • Precipitation
  • Soil Moisture/Temperature at 5cm
  • Soil Moisture/Temperature at 10cm
  • Soil Moisture/Temperature at 20cm
  • Soil Moisture/Temperature at 50cm
  • Soil Moisture/Temperature at 100cm

University of Tennessee - Forest Resources AgResearch and Education Center
901 South Illinois Avenue, Oak Ridge, Tennessee 37830 · Telephone: 865-483-3571 · Email: UTforest@utk.edu