Biral’s present weather sensor delivers essential data to UK harbour.

Leading meteorological specialist Biral has its SWS-200A present weather sensor installed at Cowes Harbour on the Isle of Wight.

This community project was completed by Cowes Harbour Commission (CHC) and OceanWise Ltd. and resulted in two monitoring stations being installed on the River Medina. The tide and weather data provided by these stations provide harbour users with vital information to allow any commercial and leisure vessels to make timely safety related navigational decisions.

Biral’s SWS-200A was the perfect choice with its design specifically for use in marine applications where accurate and reliable visibility measurements are required for many years.

‘‘The new Weather Station is designed to help us continue to operate safely … it will also enable us to monitor and manage key environmental data, for the harbour.” Ed Walker, Harbour Master at CHC

The first of these weather stations’ is at Shepards Marina, providing tide height and visibility information. The second is an innovative floating weather station in the main harbour providing information on harbour wind speed and direction, temperature, and barometric pressure. The tide and weather sensors feed data to the online Cowes weather station.

A range of monitoring instruments were used for the project including Biral’s SWS-200A visibility sensor. Data from all the sensors is collected and transmitted using an OceanWise smart telemetry modem and a popular data management and display system.

“Robust and integrated marine data management systems are helping our customers to improve safety, respond to changing weather patterns, and enhance decision-making.” Mark Jonas, Technical Director at OceanWise Ltd.

Biral’s sensor is specifically designed for use in harsh marine conditions. Its hard anodized casing ensures that it will continue to operate over many years and is supplied with a 5-year warranty as standard. It measures visibility or Meteorological Optical Range (MOR), as well as reporting the presence of liquid and frozen precipitation. Precipitation is reported using WMO table 4680 codes. A feature of Biral sensors is the ability to report precipitation intensity according to a range of national standards. The unique backscatter receiver gives the SWS-200A unparalleled abilities in distinguishing frozen from liquid precipitation. The wide 10m to 99.99km visibility range makes the sensor suitable of use in meteorological observation networks and research applications.

“As a trust port, we work to ensure navigational safety remains a top priority in the harbour. The Cowes Weather Station is our latest Stakeholder Benefit project designed to help CHC, the leisure and commercial stakeholders continue to operate safely. Delivered with OceanWise’s expertise in marine data, it will also enable CHC to monitor and manage key environmental data for the harbour.”, Ed Walker, Cowes Harbour Master commented. “CHC has not only taken a proactive approach to their monitoring requirements but are innovating and thinking ‘outside the box’ to seek out the best solutions to support their operations.” Said Mark Jonas, Technical Director at OceanWise Ltd.

Further information is available from Biral on +44 1275 847787, email: or visit the company’s website at