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Right as rain

01/25/2011 @ 10:52am

Rain gauges have been a staple on farms for decades. While these devices are pretty low tech, they are fairly accurate in measuring rainfall. Although this method is much more accurate than catching rain in a cup, it’s still prone to errors.

According to the Fundamentals of Hydrology by Timothy Davie, these devices need to be checked immediately following a rainfall. Otherwise, evaporation could mean a lower reading. Ideally, the rain gauge is flush with the ground, but this can cause splashback and give a higher-than-normal reading. If you try to offset this problem by raising the gauge above ground, this presents another problem – turbulence. Greater wind speeds create more turbulence around the gauge and can cause a measurement error of up to 20%.

There’s an easier, more accurate way to determine how much rain has fallen in your area. A patent-pending technology through MyRainReport.com eliminates the inconvenience and guesswork associated with checking a rain gauge by allowing customers to keep track of rainfall on remote properties or large tracts of land simply by checking e-mail. Reports can be sent to up to three e-mail addresses.

A subscription service, MyRainReport.com, uses Doppler radar technology combined with proprietary algorithms, the latitude and longitude of your property, and a precise quality-control system to generate an accurate measurement of rainfall.

How It Works

There is no equipment to buy or maintain, and it eliminates the need to track and record readings. By zooming in on your property using the Google Maps application on the MyRainReport.com website, you choose the exact location for the monitoring site. Customers can choose from a variety of services, including site-specific daily and monthly rain reports as well as rainfall alerts.

Daily reports relay the total amount of rainfall that occurred the previous day. Monthly reports are delivered the first day of the month and include all rainfall for the previous month broken down day by day. Each of these services costs $10 per month per location. If you’d like to receive both reports, the fee is $15 a month per location.

Need to know the moment you receive a particular amount of rain? The system has that capability, too, with the rainfall alert option. Alerts are delivered once a predetermined amount of rain has fallen on a site during a 24-hour period. The cost is $10 a month per location.

No matter which service you choose, there is a one-time setup fee of $10.

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