Cambridge Weather Station

Roof of William Gates Building


The history of the Weather Station is tightly linked to the history of one research group and its members. The group started as the "Open Media Group" and was located within the Computer Laboratory as part of the Systems Research Group (SRG). The initial weather station is created by members of the group and starts collecting data on Friday 30 June 1995. It is located on the roof of AT&T Laboratories Cambridge.

In 1997, the group changes name to the "Laboratory for Communication Engineering" and becomes part of the Engineering Department. In May 2002 the weather station moves with the group and is relocated from AT&T Laboratories Cambridge to the rooftop of the Baker Building in the Engineering Department. Some old photos of the weather station in that location exist.

In 2004, the group rejoins the Computer Laboratory as the Digital Technology Group (DTG). The weather station is relocated yet again to the rooftop of the Computer Laboratory, where it remains today. In 2023, the DTG dissolves at the same time as the retirement of its long-time Head of Group and Head of the Computer Laboratory between 2004 and 2018, Sir Andy Hopper.

Today, the weather station remains as part of the Department of Computer Science and Technology, the new name of the Computer Laboratory (from 1st of October 2017).


We use a Met-Log Automatic Weather Station to collect the raw data used by our software. The Met-Log hardware comprises a set of analogue sensors and a dedicated device which converts the sensor outputs to digital form and makes them available on a serial line. It was purchased from R&D Instromet Ltd.

A new precipitation sensor was installed on Tuesday 31st January 2012. The sensor, a Thies Clima Laser Precipitation Monitor, was purchased from Biral.

The serial lines from the Met-Log device and the Thies precipitation sensor are connected through serial-to-ethernet adapters to the local network. The devices are controlled and queried from a Linux server running our weather services. The recorded data is then made available to the Internet through our website.

The weather station has moved locations on two occasions. Refer to the map to determine the positions of the former and current locations. Refer to this page for photos of the former location.


This page contains pictures of the roof of our building and the equipment that is installed on top. The wind and sun sensors are visible on the tallest mast, while the rain sensor is fixed to the horizontal railings. The temperature sensor is located out of sight, below the overhang of the roof, and beneath the metal walkway. This position is out of direct sunlight. The humidity sensor is integral to the temperature sensor.

Rain sensor Rain sensor
Rain Sensor (Thies Clima Laser Precipitation Monitor)
Temperature and humidity sensor
Temperature and
Humidity Sensor
Sunlight sensor and anemometer
Sunlight Sensor and