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DTR activities toward a Brazilian Automatic Hydro-meteorological network

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A massive network of rain gauge stations and other hydro-meteorological platforms are being deployed by the CTI/FACTI collaboration through DTR, whose aim is to provide a real time warning system for the population in case of severe climatic anomalies. This network is in fact a subsystem of a wider set of monitoring stations presently commissioned by CEMADEN (www.cemaden.gov.br), the Brazilian Center for Natural Disaster Monitoring and Alerts.
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DTR activities toward a Brazilian Automatic Hydro-meteorological network
Sérgio Celaschi1, Ademir L. Xavier Jr1,2, Sidney Cunha1, Germano Beraldo1, Daniel A. Bonatti1
1Division of Network Technologies, CTI Renato Archer, CEP 13069-901, Campinas, SP, Brazil
2 Fundação de Apoio à Capacitação em TI, FACTI, 13069-901, Campinas, SP, Brazil
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A massive network of rain gauge stations and other hydro-meteorological platforms are being deployed by the CTI/FACTI
collaboration through DTR, whose aim is to provide a real time warning system for the population in case of severe climatic
anomalies. This network is in fact a subsystem of a wider set of monitoring stations presently commissioned by CEMADEN
(www.cemaden.gov.br), the Brazilian Center for Natural Disaster Monitoring and Alerts.
The Division of Network Technologies (DTR) of CTI
(http://www.cti.gov.br/) has recently cooperated with CEMANDEN
(Brazilian Center for Natural Disaster Monitoring and Alerts, Pinho et al
2013)in the deployment of a massive network of Data Collecting Platforms
(DCPs) for the gathering of local hydrologic data throughout the Brazilian
territory. The network is part of a wider initiative of the Federal Government
in the form of a National Plan whose aims are: i) generation of updated risk
and geotechnical maps, ii) establishment of a nationwide monitoring and
warning system, iii) disaster prevention, iv) improvement in timing and
response in disaster mitigation.
Network data (Figure 1) are integrated by SGRP (Remote Stations
Management Systems)at CEMADEN and the resulting products become
available at SALVAR platform (System of Data Integration, Manipulation
and Visualization for Alert Delivery and Decision Making). Both SGRP and
SALVAR applications are work results of CTI DSSD (Division of Software for
Distributed Systems). Potential alerts are observed and monitored at a
situation and crisis room serving a variety of stakeholder organizations such
as CENAD (National Center for Risk and Disaster Management), ANA
(National Water Agency), academic research centers, the Brazilian Army,
Civil Defense and other government institutions. The Network is based on
commercial GSM/GPRS links and part of DTR work is to search for new and
innovative mechanism of data transfer without impacting the inherited
network infrastructure.
DCP pictures are seen in Figure 2-Left. These devices integrate a tipping
bucket pluviometer, a data logger, solar panels/batteries and several other
customizable sensors such as soil humidity and temperature units (Figure 2-
Right).
Figure 2 (Left) Pictures showing some DCP types: pluvio,acqua and agro, respectively. (Right)
Block diagram of DCP main components.
Written by A. L. Xavier Jr. DTR/CTI, Campinas, Brazil, March 2015
Figure 1 Overall data flow diagram of the hydro-meteorological network as part of the Brazilian
National Plan for Disaster Mitigation. DCP field installation and configuration is under DTR, FACTI
and CTI management
The sitting process has been conducted in the field by CTI and FACTI and
it has a series of procedural steps not only to define ideal site location but
also to warrant the proper equipment ownership at the installation site. Since
the site is rarely a public domain, prior to sitting, it is inspected by an
UNESCO advisory team (Project 914BRZ2018/MCTI) and checked against a
set of minimum requirements. Ideal sitting conditions involve the choice of a
minimally flat terrain and unobstructed areas (stations located at least 10 m
away from trees, buildings etc and 30 m away from sealed roads or
highways) due to solar powering. Depending on the terrain type, options are
not readily available which complicates the process.
DCP external communication is provided by a GPRS modem
(RS232/RS445 interfaces, EGSM 900 and GSM 1800 bands, max. downlink
rate ~90 kbps, max. uplink rate ~42 kbps) and an external antenna of two
types, depending on the DCP location. In urban areas, a single monopole < 2
dBi antenna gain is used. Rural zones require higher gains for the same
GPRS modem connected to a >10 dBi Log-periodic antenna. The DCP data
logger performs AD conversion for all sensor units which include a tipping
bucket rain gauge (Habib et al.2001,Wang et al. 2008) (200 ± 0.5 mm
bucket diameter, 500 mm/h capacity and ± 2% or ±3 % accuracy in the 0-
250 mm/h and 250 500 mm/h interval, respectively) and internal
humidity, temperature and control box lock sensors. Such internal data
measurements are periodically registered and sent for maintenance reasons.
The power module has a battery bank (12V/36 Ah), a solar panel (maximum
power 20W/17.4V@25oC) and a charge control unit.
References: Habib, E., Krajewski, W. F., & Kruger, A. (2001). Sampling errors of tipping-bucket rain
gauge measurements. Journal of Hydrologic Engineering, 6(2), 159-166.Pinho, P; Finco, S. and Pinho
C.(2013) Overview of the Brazilian centre for natural disaster monitoring and alerts (CEMADEN),
Conference: Proceedings of the Fifth International Conference on Management of Emergent Digital
EcoSystems. Wang, J., Fisher, B. L. and Wolff D. B (2008)Estimating Rain Rates from Tipping-
Bucket Rain Gauge Measurements, J. Atmos. Oceanic Technol., 25,4356.
The current and planned (target)
number of DCPs are: i) 2300
automatic stations (3000 target)
called DCP-pluvio (Figure 4); ii) 40
automatic stations (target 495) called
DCP-Acqua, used primarily to collect
data in the semi-arid region; iii) 10
automatic stations called DCP-Agro
(target 100); iv) 1000 semi-automatic
stations (target 1375) called DCP-Semi
to motivate public participation in
weather monitoring and event
reporting and v) 115 hydrologic
stations (target 301) called DCP-Hidro
for river monitoring.
Figure 4 Accumulated number of installed
DCPs Pluviofrom August 2013 to March
2015.
Figure 3 (Upper Left) Percent of the total population (200 million inhabitants) assisted by the
network installation plan until 2014 according to monitoring and priority status. (Lower Left) Same
statistics in terms of city number. (Right) Image of part of the national and interactive map (see
http://www.cemaden.gov.br/mapainterativo/) showing several DCPs on the State of Rio de Janeiro
on March 4 2015. The following color scheme gives the precipitation volumes: grey, no data; green <
10 mm; yellow 10 mm and < 30 mm; orange, 30 mm and < 70 mm.
Besides activities in Hardware and
network setup and integration, DTR is also
developing a warning software for the
population (Figure 5). A user interface will
deliver, via mobile platforms (cell phones
and web browsers), constant alert updates
requiring the user to login his/her
geographical coordinates and contact
information. In the future, several alert
types will be available (not only for rainfall
but also soil dislocation and landslides).
DTR efforts also contemplate the search
for innovative hydrologic sensors and
correlation studies with satellite data. Figure 5 User registration page for the
climate warning mobile application in
development by DTR/CTI/FACTI.
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