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The story about the 2 sensors atop the Golden Gate
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windfind



Joined: 18 Mar 1997
Posts: 811

PostPosted: Wed May 15, 2013 5:10 pm    Post subject: The story about the 2 sensors atop the Golden Gate Reply with quote

Gang,

Amazing as it might seem today we installed 2 new sensors on the Golden Gate bridge.

One sensor is on the very top of the South tower at 746 feet above sea level. It is mostly for meteorological purposes but it will give you an early warning of inbound wind and the likely gust factor at the surface later in the day.

The second sensor is on the western end of the concrete moat structure that surrounds the base of the South tower. It is about 20 feet above sea level and will be very useful in judging the winds past Anita Rock.

Using the sensors is a bit tricky since their latitude and longitude is almost identical. So you have to zoom in real close in windalert.com to see both sensors. And... no they will not appear of iwindsurf.com or ikitesurf.com.

These sensors are installed only for the duration of the America's Cup.

Mike Godsey
Weatherflow
iwindsurf.com/ikitesurf.com



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Last edited by windfind on Fri May 17, 2013 12:13 pm; edited 1 time in total
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windward1



Joined: 18 Jun 2000
Posts: 721

PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2013 10:26 pm    Post subject: Sensor Installation Reply with quote

Hi Windfind,

Do you have a video of the Weatherflow guys installing these sensors? Looks like it could have been a precarious operation.

Windward1
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windfind



Joined: 18 Mar 1997
Posts: 811

PostPosted: Fri May 17, 2013 12:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Hi Windfind,

Do you have a video of the Weatherflow guys installing these sensors? Looks like it could have been a precarious operation.


Hi Windward,

Our contract with the Golden Gate forbids our publishing any photos or videos for commercial gain so I will have to draw you a picture with words.

I was not on the install team Tuesday. But I was on the exploration team last year that went up to the top of both towers and down to the base of each. As well as crawling through the mass of girders below the road deck.

Basically you go through submarine type hatches into the interior of the tower. Then you enter a tiny 75 year old 1-2 man elevator with no walls. However for security reasons we had to have a escort. So 3 men had to climb in, press our noses into different corners and turn our shoulders at 45 degree angles to all fit. It is a very slow almost 80 story elevator ride passing through a mass of old structural steel.

Going up the tower you keep your hands and fingers close to your body as the elevator passes an endless maze of steel boxes that make up the bridge. You exit via another submarine hatch into metal utility room and from there out a hatch at the highest cross member at the top of the tower. There are narrow walkways made of expanded metal mesh and it is a bit strange to look at your feet and see cars and water over 700 feet below you. There are railings at 18" and 36" so when we had to crawl under the huge main cables that suspend the bridge our bodies were almost below the lowest railing which was unnerving.

The view is simply indescribable. The previous day I had flown over the Golden Gate and up the coast in a Coast Guard twin jet helicopter looking for sites for new sensors but there is something about standing atop the Golden Gate looking down that hits you a lot more than simply flying by and looking down. See helicopter shots at: http://windnotes.phanfare.com/4743675_5825871#imageID=144749929

Going down the tower from the deck you emerge through onto the huge concrete foundation of the S. tower. Then you climb down a long rusty metal ladder embedded in the concrete. From there you cross over a high above the moat via a 50 foot narrow deeply rusted and rarely used foot bridge. You are now on the 10 thick concrete walls of the cofferdam that was used to construct the tower foundation and now surrounds and protects the tower from wayward ships. There is a 24 inch railing on the moat side of this wall but nothing on the ocean side. One of our sensors is located on the west edge of this cofferdam.

Over a year ago I first suggested how useful it would be to have a sensor on top of the S. tower for forecasting purposes. I never dreamt that we would actually be able to pull it off. But after almost a year of negotiations by our Jay Titlow our sensor install guys Phil and Stuart pulled off the amazing install last Tuesday.

Mike Godsey
iwindsurf.com/ikitesurf.com



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windward1



Joined: 18 Jun 2000
Posts: 721

PostPosted: Fri May 17, 2013 1:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Mike,

Great description! Thanks!

I was thinking you might have to climb up the suspension cables. I did not know about the small elevators.

Great to have sensors at those spots.

Regards,

Windward1
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reneecarlson



Joined: 04 May 2004
Posts: 14

PostPosted: Fri May 17, 2013 1:20 pm    Post subject: Great Job Reply with quote

That is great filming and discription of going up the Golden Gate Bridge
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victor



Joined: 03 Aug 1998
Posts: 559

PostPosted: Fri May 17, 2013 2:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

too bad you couldn't get a sensor on the no. tower.
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boggsman1



Joined: 24 Jun 2002
Posts: 3615
Location: at a computer

PostPosted: Fri May 17, 2013 2:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

victor wrote:
too bad you couldn't get a sensor on the no. tower.

Bad Idea, Bad.
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windfind



Joined: 18 Mar 1997
Posts: 811

PostPosted: Fri May 17, 2013 3:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We checked out the top and the bottom of the north tower as sites. Way to big of wind shadows and turbulence from the Marin Headlands.

Mike
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rpaillon



Joined: 02 May 1998
Posts: 91

PostPosted: Fri May 17, 2013 3:36 pm    Post subject: Sucking Hind ___ Reply with quote

Mike,

I've been supporting iwindsurf since day one. That's so long I forgot what it used to be called. Why am I sucking a tit behind Windalert?
I was able to get Blunt Point on Windalert without paying additional for their service. Is there a way I can see these sensors without paying extra?

Rick
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ethurlow



Joined: 07 Dec 2002
Posts: 104

PostPosted: Fri May 17, 2013 4:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

HI Mike, Neat report! Looks like it was a nice day to be at the top of the tower too.

I will be checking windalert to see if Crissy looks promising for wind.

Thanks,

Ernie
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