NOAA Satellite Information System


Argos Applications

System Use Policy

User Area

System Use Agreement
of the Month

 Jan  |  Feb  |  Mar  |  Apr  |  May

 Past By Year:
 2012  |  2013  |  2014  |  2015  |  2016

Other Links



Argos DCS System Use Agreement of the Month
– November 2016

Kilimanjaro Weather Station
University of Massachusetts – Geosciences Department


In February of 2000, we installed an automated weather station on the Northern Icefield of Kilimanjaro, in Tanzania. Our primary objective is to develop a better understanding of the atmospheric processes responsible for the continuing retreat of glaciers in East Africa.

Measurements from the weather station are also helping to calibrate the ice core record of past climate, and link the mountain climate to longer-term records at lower elevations in Tanzania. In conjunction with the record of past climate determined from the ice cores, our weather station is elucidating the forcing mechanisms and putting the current retreat of the glaciers in a longer-term perspective. Measurements and modeling results reveal that snowfall – magnitude, timing and frequency – is the most important factor governing surface mass balance of the summit glaciers, through control of albedo. Air temperatures at this site remain below freezing, except during exceptional conditions.

We installed an Argos transmitter on the station in February 2001, and began using the Argos Data Collection System. This has worked extremely well from the summit of Kilimanjaro, yielding a near-perfect record of data recovery. Through telemetry, we are able to continuously monitor the performance of instruments and power supply, invaluable information for planning visits to the station. In 2010 and 2012 we installed supplemental, high accuracy sensors compatible with the US Climate Reference Network (USCRN), further increasing the value of this long record from one of the world’s highest automated weather stations.

For more information:


Satellite Products and Services Division
Direct Services Branch
Phone: 301-817-4543
Take Our Survey
Mailing Address:
1315 East-West Hwy
Silver Spring, MD 20910-3282     USA