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Table of Contents

RAAF Meteorological Service



Chapter 1: The Weather Factor in Warfare

Chapter 2: Establishing and Developing the RAAF Directorate of Met. Services (D.Met.S)

Chapter 3: Recruiting and Training of Personnel
Senior Officers
Recruitment and Personnel
Training Courses
'Who are these Met blokes?'

Chapter 4: Meteorology in Aviation

Chapter 5: The Met. Retreating

Chapter 6: The Met. Advancing

Chapter 7: The Met With the Army and the Navy

Chapter 8: Divisional Offices of the Bureau of Meteorology During the War

Chapter 9: Research and Instrumental Development

Chapter 10: The End, Aftermath, and Beyond

Appendix 1

Appendix 2

Appendix 3

Appendix 4



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Training Courses

The average constricted length of various specialist training courses was six months for officers, three months for Meteorological Assistants, and one month for Meteorological Charters. This was in addition to periods of routine military training provided for all ranks. Most senior officers enlisted or who were appointed with commissioned rank straight into the RAAF received little or no military training. However, some of these such as Group-Captain Warren, Wing-Commander Timcke, and Squadron-Leader A. C. White had previously served with the Australian forces in World War I.

From 18 July 1941 to 13 July 1945, eleven male officers' forecasting courses were completed. During 1943, selected personnel of commissioned and noncommissioned ranks were trained in the use and operation of radiosonde which had become available. Mainly because of careful selection, failure rates in courses were low, most being in the forecasting and radiosonde courses. These courses were rigorously searching, and had to be completed in a restricted period, far shorter than would have been the case in peace time. Assessment was usually terse and to the point. For example:

'Pilot Officer . . . has a high standard of proficiency in the work and will make a good operator. Pilot Officer . . . has completed the training course, but is not considered a satisfactory radiosonde operator, and is not recommended as a suitable person to be in charge of radiosonde flights. His interest is slight and attention to detail very poor. Although very capable, has little pride in his work which is of low standard unless constantly supervised!'[24]

During their service, some Meteorological Assistants—usually of the rank of Warrant Officer or Sergeant—undertook courses, and qualified as forecasters. Training was a serious matter, but in a situation where many young men and women came together, tension and tedium were most likely to be relieved by humorous incidents. As an instructor in the training section for a period, I can recall occasions when the lighter side of life only seemed to revitalise the general enthusiasm that characterised these trainees.

People in Bright Sparcs - Timcke, Edward Waldemar; Warren, Herbert Norman; White, Arthur Charles

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Joyce, J. 1993 'The Story of the RAAF Meteorological Service', Metarch Papers, No. 5 October 1993, Bureau of Meteorology

© Online Edition Australian Science and Technology Heritage Centre and Bureau of Meteorology 2001
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