||Federation and Meteorology
Table of Contents
Glimpse of the RAAF Meteorological Service
Chapter 1: Growing Up
Chapter 2: Port Moresby Before Pearl Harbour
Sydney to Port Moresby by DH-86
First Impressions of Port Moresby
Meteorological Office Routine
Flight to Kokoda
John (Doc) Hogan
Setting up House
We Join the RAAF
A Contrast in Attitudes
Some RAAF History
RAAF No 10 Squadron
RAAF No 11 Squadron
The Catalina Story
Construction of the Seven-mile Airstrip and Reclamation Area
Meteorological Service for the RAAF
Our State of Readiness
Our Domestic Situation
A Japanese Surprise Packet
What Had We Meteorologists Achieved?
Chapter 3: Port Moresby After Pearl Harbour
Chapter 4: Allied Air Force HQ and RAAF Command, Brisbane
Chapter 5: Japan Surrenders and We Are Demobilised
Appendix 1: References
Appendix 2: Milestones
Appendix 3: Papers Published in Tropical Weather Research Bulletins
Appendix 4: Radiosonde Observations 194146
Our Domestic Situation (continued)In due course Jennifer Louise was born on 22 October and much to my relief (and no doubt Audrey's), the birth was without undue complication and the baby was healthy. Jennifer was a sturdy baby and Audrey and I were to have about eight weeks of family life with her before the Japanese produced a surprise packet.
A Japanese Surprise PacketKeith Hannay received a posting to Khota Baru in Malaya and left by aircraft for Townsville on the morning of Monday 8 December 1941. After his departure we received word that the Japanese had bombed Pearl Harbour at about 4am (our time) on Monday 8 December (8:25am Sunday 7 December Honolulu time). The difference in time zones makes for confusion in dates and times, particularly with the dateline being in the vicinity of 180 degrees of longitude, approximately in mid-Pacific. Keith heard of the event while still in the air en route to Townsville. There was of course no formal declaration of war by the Japanese before the attack on Pearl Harbour.
I have no clear memory of the events of the next 10 days. I do recall that my first forecast after Pearl Harbour was issued for a reconnaissance flight by a RAAF Hudson from No 6 Squadron from Rabaul for the purpose of observing activity on the Japanese island of Kapingamarangi, located about two degrees of latitude north of the equator. We had no meteorological observations north of Kavieng (about 2 degrees south latitude) so that the forecast was prepared without knowledge of the weather conditions to the north of that point. At that time of the year the north-west season would have brought considerable cloud and rain and the Hudson would have experienced heavy weather.
Three Lockheed Hudsons of No 24 Squadron commanded by Sqn Ldr Johnny Lerew had refuelled in Port Moresby about a week previously, en route to Rabaul. The remainder of No 24 Squadron's aircraft, numbering three Hudsons and 11 Wirraways, were still in Townsville. There were four Short Empire 'C' Class flying boats of No 11 Squadron and seven Catalinas of No 20 Squadron in Port Moresby harbour.
People in Bright Sparcs - Hannay, Alexander Keith (Keith)
© Online Edition Australian Science and Technology Heritage Centre and Bureau of Meteorology 2001
Published by Australian Science and Technology Heritage Centre, using the Web Academic Resource Publisher