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Table of Contents

Memories of the Bureau, 1946 to 1962





Chapter 1: The Warren Years, 1946 to 1950
Warren the Man
Warren Joins the Bureau
Wartime Perceptions and Attitudes
Return to Civvy Street
People in the Bureau
Re-establishing and Reorganising the Bureau
Reorganisation of Central Office
The Position of Chief Scientific Officer
Post-War Reorganisation
The Haldane Story
Public Weather Services
The New South Wales Divisional Office
The Victorian Divisional Office
The Queensland Divisional Office
The South Australian Divisional Office
The Western Australian Divisional Office
The Tasmanian Divisional Office
Pre-war Services for Civil Aviation
Post-War Meteorological Service for Aviation
Indian Ocean Survey Flight
The Aviation Field Staff
Synoptic Analysis, Prognosis and Forecasting
Antarctic and Southern Ocean Meteorology
A Wider Scientific Horizon
Research, Development and Special Investigations
Analysts' Conference, April 1950
Instruments and Observations
Radar Winds and Radar Weather Watch
Climate and Statistics
The Universities
Achievements of the Warren Years

Chapter 2: International Meteorology

Chapter 3: The Timcke Years, 1950 to 1955

Chapter 4: A Year at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Chapter 5: The Dwyer Years, 1955 to 1962

Chapter 6: A Springboard for the Future

Appendix 1: References

Appendix 2: Reports, Papers, Manuscripts

Appendix 3: Milestones

Appendix 4: Acknowledgements

Appendix 5: Summary by H. N. Warren of the Operation of the Meteorological Section of Allied Air Headquarters, Brisbane, 1942–45



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Climate and Statistics (continued)

The Hollerith system provided a tool of enormous flexibility for the processing of climatological data. It required a team of punch-card operators, producing on the 80 column card a series of punched holes as a record of the various meteorological elements. Passing those cards through the sorting and tabulating machines enabled calculation of averages and frequency distributions, eliminating much of the tedious work previously required.

Des Halsted left the Bureau for promotion to a more senior position of statistical officer with the Department of Air in Melbourne and after further promotion to chief statistical officer decided to accept a position with the Hooker Company in Sydney in 1959 when the Department of Air HQ moved to Canberra. His ability was recognised by the Hooker Company and he became Corporation General Manager, a Director in 1970 and Deputy Chairman in 1985. Hookers, a large, very diverse and successful public company involved in all aspects of real estate was at one stage Australia's largest pastoral company with 200 000 head of cattle, 100 000 sheep and 45 000 acres of wheat. Now retired from these and other senior positions Des spends his time with golf and bowls.

The progress achieved in the Climate and Statistical Sections of the Bureau's Central Office in the years 1946 to 1950 was remarkable. Of particular significance was the efficient planning and installation of the Hollerith system, which was later to facilitate the transfer of punch-card data to an electronic computer data base. The scope and flexibility of that data base owes much to colonial meteorologists such as Russell, Todd and Wragge and those who maintained and expanded the data base after the Bureau came into being.

As illustrated by the contribution of the former cadet meteorologist, Des Halsted, one of Warren's notable achievements which had a lasting impact on the Bureau's development was his sponsorship of the recruitment of cadet meteorologists in the Bureau, an initiative followed by succeeding Directors of Meteorology. This produced a crop of brilliant young meteorologists, many of whom still occupy senior positions in the Bureau, where they have contributed significantly to the Bureau's status as an scientific institution making a major contribution to the safety and welfare of the general community.

People in Bright Sparcs - Russell, Henry Chamberlain; Todd, Charles; Warren, Herbert Norman; Wragge, Clement Lindley

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Gibbs, W. J. 1999 'A Very Special Family: Memories of the Bureau of Meteorology 1946 to 1962', Metarch Papers, No. 13 May 1999, Bureau of Meteorology

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