Tulliemet - NOT corner

A hideaway for the many reclusive, but proud, NOTs (Nerd Of Tulliemet)!

  #1 - Solar radiation   #2 - What's that flight?   #3 - How big is Loch Ordie?
  #4 - The setting sun   #5 - Osprey tracking    #6 - New A9 road signs?  
  #7 - Tulliemet night sky   #8 - Broadband speeds   #9 - Red squirrels
  #10 - Historical inflation       

  #11 - Comparing rainfall   



#11 - 3 February 2014 Comparing rainfall

For seven years now we have been comparing the rainfall statistics in Tulliemet.  Earlier we opined that 2013 had been the driest of the years since 2007.  This turns out probably not to be true.  We had forgotten the effect of one vital piece of information - that the method of measuring the rainfall changed in 2012.

In March 2012 we began recording the rainfall as detected by the Davis automatic weather station in preference to that received by the common ground-level measuring cone.  The important point is that these instruments are mounted at different heights above ground (Davis at 1.2m and the cone 0.1m).  Under conditions in which there is any wind the height can make a large difference to the rainfall recorded.  See this article for salient points of the story.  It is indeed sobering to realise that this knowledge has been around for nearly 250 years, but has only just reached our ears!

As a result of the change of instruments we have now started a new Cumulative Rainfall plot.  The plot of previous years is still available here.



#10 - 07 Sept 2013  Inflation

Oldies always like to remember how cheap everything was in the good old days.  Before you give in to that thesis too easily, check out the effects of inflation using this handy calculator.  Things often don't seem so good then.  As an example, check out a true comparison of petrol prices in this article.

#9 - 14 April 2013 - Red squirrels

Apparently no sightings of red squirrels east of the A9 around Tulliemet have been reported yet (follow this link and zoom in to the Tulliemet area). Let's fix that by reporting some of the many sightings known to take place - because they are soooo cute!

#8 - 12 April 2013 - Broadband speeds

There are moves afoot to try and provide faster broadband to rural Perthshire using a self-help scheme. HPCP is leading this and is gathering information on the download speeds currently achieved in various locations.  You can help by feeding back your broadband performance to them.  Try this speed tester (or even this Council-recommended one) and feed back the data to HPCP. (Unfortunately the HPCP link is currently broken - comments have been made!)

#7 - 10 January 2013 - Tulliemet night sky

NOTs like to know what's happening in the sky and one of the best places for NOT-type information is the Heavens Above site.  There you can get predictions of when the ISS (International Space Station) is passing over or where exactly the Sun, Moon or any temporary visitors (comets, asteroids) are.  The new FITSAT-1 satellite sounds like an interesting one to track down.  The link above is preloaded with the Tulliemet coordinates, so just hit the SUBMIT button to get started. 

If you want more details of what's happening astronomically this month, a really good site is the Jodrell Bank website.

#6 - 13 Sep '12 - New A9 road signs?

We are all familiar with the helpful electronic roadsigns or information bulletins displayed on the A9 (Drive on the left, Drive with consideration, Don't text and drive).  Maybe these two messages (first & second) spotted recently by a couple of cyclists in the Himalayas could also be adopted!

#5 - 10 Sep '12 - Osprey tracking

This is not strictly a Tulliemet item, but it is clever and interesting. Follow two of this year's Loch of the Lowes osprey chicks as they fly south.

#4 - 05 Sep '12 - The setting sun

From some vantage points in Tulliemet, twice a year it should be possible to see the sun setting on the local horizon directly behind Schiehallion.  The dates should be around September 13-14th and March 26-27th.  Given Schiehallion's important place in astronomical history, there is a prize awaiting the first photograph to show Schiehallion clearly silhouetted against the setting sun at either of these times.

#3 - 27 Aug '12 - How big is Loch Ordie?

Ever wanted to measure the area of a garden (to check estate agents' claims perhaps), a field or Loch Ordie*?  This handy little tool is just the job!

*for diehard NOTs, the answer is 113 acres, 45.68 hectares or, perhaps most appropriately, 0.13 square nautical miles!  At least that dwarfs the 102 acres of Loch Broom.  This is, of course, assuming the software tool and Google maps work accurately.  A quick test on Loch Rannoch gave an area of 18.8 km2, which compares favourably with the 19 km2 given by Murray and Pullar in 1910 (Ref.)  Any other suggestions for testing it, maybe on a smaller scale? 

#2 - 23 Aug '12 - What's that flight?

Ever wondered where that plane is going?  Click on a yellow plane symbol (when on the Flightradar24 webpage) to see more details of the plane and its route.  You can also zoom in or out and drag the image to see what's happening in the skies of Europe and elsewhere.  Visit www.flightradar24.com directly for options to filter on particular flights or airlines.

Our local favourite is a regular visitor often visible in the west - off on a 23-hour trip to Tahiti - bon voyage!

#1 - 20 Aug '12 - Solar radiation

The Tulliemet weather station has a detector which records the accumulated solar radiation energy over a period of time (in this case one day).  This is measured in Langleys (1 Ly = 41.84 kJm-2).  An interesting comparison is the data recorded with this detector against the production (in kW) from solar PV panels.  The nearest person I've found who keeps adequately detailed records of their PV output (the value of quarterly cheques from the power company doesn't quite do it!) lives near Loch Tummel and the comparison is shown below.  Given the distance apart of the two sampling devices, the correspondence is pretty good.

Solar plot


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