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Table of Contents

History of Research in the Bureau of Meteorology




Chapter 1: Germination and Growth
The First Three Decades
A Time of Rapid Growth

Chapter 2: Struggle, Competition and Emergence

Appendix 1: Meteorology Act 1906

Appendix 2: Meteorology Act 1955

Appendix 3: Simpson Report

Appendix 4: Survey Questionnaire

Appendix 5: Bibliography



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The Struggle for Growth (continued)

One of these suggestions concerned the purchase of suitable gear and equipment for the conduct of experiments on the atmosphere by means of kites as part of the continuing international program to explore the upper air. The sum of £1000 was set aside in the budget for this purpose and the equipment was later purchased from a number of English suppliers. It was eventually delivered to a site in Canberra (Taylor [72]) but, unfortunately, no more has ever been heard of that particular project.

As mentioned earlier, climatological research was encouraged within the Bureau. Hunt continued his interest in the description of the various weather patterns which influenced Australia and in 1913 he published The Climate and Weather of Australia[41], in association with Griffith Taylor and E. T. Quayle. He also supported the independent efforts of his colleagues in the further study of this subject.

Quayle was very active in this area and wrote a number of papers in an attempt to establish some correlation between both the behaviour of the monsoon and/or the movement of cirrus clouds across Victoria on the extent of rainfall over that State (Quayle [67], [68]).

Whilst a great deal of this early climatological work has now largely been forgotten, it did lay the foundations for the research now being undertaken by the Bureau's National Climate Centre into the greenhouse effect and other indicators of climate change. It also made it absolutely necessary for the Bureau to exercise as strict a quality control system as possible over the observations network. This provided a strong basis for the current climate data base which is used for both information and research purposes.

Actual attempts to explore the upper air did not commence until 1913, when Griffith Taylor and Harold Power commenced work using the recently invented Dines meteorograph, attached to balloons flown from the Bureau's Central Office in Melbourne. This work continued sporadically until 1915, at least, and the results were published in 1916 (Taylor [72]).

Organisations in Australian Science at Work - National Climate Centre

People in Bright Sparcs - Hunt, Henry Ambrose ; Quayle, Edwin Thomas; Taylor, Thomas Griffith

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Gardner, J. 1997 'Stormy Weather: A History of Research in the Bureau of Meteorology', Metarch Papers, No. 11 December 1997, Bureau of Meteorology

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