Skip to main content

Bidding for New Radar Station Set in Japan - CT

Bids are now being submitted in Japan for the construction of a new Doppler radar facility at the Buenavista station of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) in Bato, Catanduanes.


Engr. Fredolina Baldonado, Assistant Weather Services Chief at PAGASA Central Office, told the Tribune that the groundbreaking for the project, to be funded by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) will be held this November, with construction of the 39-meter tall building tower to take at least a year.

The Buenavista project is part of the upgrade of the weather bureau’s three aged radar systems in Aparri, Cagayan; Virac, Catanduanes; and, Guiuan, Eastern Samar. The existing radar systems, with capabilities limited to detection and monitoring of tropical cyclones forming in the Pacific Ocean, will have to be upgraded to enable Pagasa to provide advisories on rainfall volume and wind velocity.

Pagasa chief Nilo Prisco said in a recent statement that these are separate from the five Doppler radars now in the pipeline that are being funded by the national government under the 2005 and 2007 General Appropriations Acts and the 2007 calamity funds.

Once in place, Nilo said the agency will be able to provide ‘faster and more accurate’ weather updates. He said the radar upgrades and acquisition of new radar facilities will complement Pagasa’s program on the full automation of its monitoring, evaluation and dissemination processes.

At the moment, Pagasa can provide weather bulletins only at six-hour intervals but once the radars and automated systems are fully operational, the agency will be able to perform at par with three-hourly bulletins of its Japanese counterpart. Costing no less than P70 million each including spares and training of personnel, the Doppler radar can provide hourly weather update and accurate time and amount of rainfall in a given area as well as the wind velocity of a tropical cyclone. The Doppler radar is the most advanced instrument in weather forecasting. Aside from tracking typhoons, it can calculate wind speeds and formation or path of tornadoes.

According to the local Pagasa, the Buenavista radar station has been non-operational for three years now due to lack of spare parts, with weathermen limited to synoptic observations of cloud cover and rainfall amount using the rain gauge.

The defect was probably caused by the failure of the agency to run the radar 24 hours a day as designed, with moisture forming inside the sensitive equipment. Before it conked out, the radar was operated for two hours twice a day and then reduced to once a day for lack of funds for the purchase of fuel for the diesel generator.

A weatherman said they have been forced to rely on the 35-kV genset after the First Catanduanes Electric Cooperative, Inc. (Ficelco) failed to provide adequate, three-phase power 24 hours a day. He blamed wildly fluctuating voltage at the facility that at one time, the switch box burst into flames when they switched to co-op power.

Ficelco management has promised to look into possible solutions to the problem including the replacement of transmission lines and power transformers.

Under the design approved by JICA, the existing facility with its distinctive radome on top would be sliced in half, as the radome tower is structurally infirm. The remaining two-storey building would be connected to the new tower building via a bridge and would serve as the office.

On the other hand, it is claimed that the operation of radar before it went out of service had been affected by the operation of the Smart cellsite tower built in the same compound just 50 meters away from the radome. According to a weatherman, the radar had been rendered blind in the South-West sector where the cellsite is located as the echo from the radar did not bounce back..

The cellsite was constructed during the time of chief weatherman Ely Rodulfo and allegedly covered by a memorandum of agreement between the agency, the provincial government and the telecommunications company.

However, Eufronio Garcia, officer-in-charge of Pagasa Virac, said the central office itself is in the dark as to how the Smart cellsite tower came to be constructed inside the agency property. Even the personnel of the local Pagasa has yet to see a copy of the agreement, he stressed.

Source: Catanduanes Tribune - 16 September 2009

Popular posts from this blog

Catanduanes Forest in German-Funded DENR Project

The Catanduanes Watershed Forest Reserve (CWFR) is among the 60 protected areas around the country that are covered by a German-funded environmental project aimed at improving the management of the Philippines’ natural resources. CENRO officer-in-charge Luvimindo Chioco recently told the Tribune that the Protected Area Management Enhancement (PAME) project is being implemented by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), under a grant from the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety. The funding was coursed through the German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ). The P450 million (€9 million) project is being carried out nationwide until March 2017 to ensure proper management of 60 existing protected areas by improving the technical competencies and capacities of staff of the DENR’s Protected Area and Wildlife Bureau. The PAME project will also see the establishment of at least 100 new terrestrial and mari…

Catanduanes Watershed Forest Reserve

Site description: Catanduanes is an island of 182,300 ha which lies about 10 km off the tip of the Caramoan Peninsula in southern Luzon. The terrain on the island is hilly, particularly in the central portion, but the highest point only reaches just over 800 m. The substantial forests which remain in central Catanduanes are therefore all lowland dipterocarp in type, and are the largest remaining forest block in the whole of the Bicol Region. Forest is found above 490 m, and is estimated to cover a total of about 69,770 ha. It includes considerable areas of old growth dipterocarp forest (reported in 1997 to cover 5,876 ha), and closed-canopy forest in areas that show evidence of having been logged. These forest areas are the source of water for Catanduanes Province. One hydropower project is currently operational, that supplies power to urban areas of the island. The forest areas was proclaimed as a Watershed Reserve in 1987 because of these important function, the whole area is sta…

Japanese Retirement Village in the Philippines

The Philippines is being eyed as a prime medical, health care and retirement destination for Japanese. According to studies, one out of four people in Japan will be aged 65 by 2020, from one out of six in 2000. Now is the best time to set up the retirement village for Japanese as baby boomers will start retiring in 2007. Several notable Japanese companies have already initiated building medical and retirement havens in the Philippines. These include Sanyo Emeritus Co. Ltd., a joint venture between Sanyo Electric and Emeritus Corp. of Seattle, which provides "assisted living" services in the US and Canada; as well as Tokushukai Medical Corp., Japan's largest hospital chain, which is putting up a $100 million, 1000-bed hospital in the Philippines, targeting elderly Japanese citizens. The Philippines is highly regarded because of its mild climate enjoyed by Japanese, its close proximity to Japan, the high quality of the Philippines' healthcare workforce, and the sign…

Pantomina Lyrics And Music

Pantomina is Spanish for pantomime, movements imitating the courtship movements of the rooster and the hen.
Ang mga babaye
Kung mayo pa nin agom
Maugay nin aga maugay nin hapon
Alagad kung sinda igua na nin agom
Maugay Octobre, Disyembreng sunudon.

Ica palan, Nenang ang pinagsasabi
Magayon na burac sa lugar na ini
Magayon ang tindog malinig ang pisngi
Arin pa daw ang puso ang dai mawili.

Can ica sadit pa sadit pa man aco
Si satuyang cawat magkudot-kudotan
Kinudot mo aco kinudot ta ca man
Sabi mo sa saco luhayluhaya man.

Ang mga lalake
Hudyan sisaboot
Ang pinagsasabing ngarang pagcamoot
Kundi ang babayeng iyo minahilod
Akong minahiling can mga pangguyod.

Philippine Mining Act of 1995

With the recent issue of magnetite ore mining overwhemingly opposed by residents in the town of Bagamanoc and recently moved the mining site off the coast of Panganiban (Payo), I am compelled to post this Mining Act to serve as reference. "Republic Act No. 7942 or the Philippine Mining Act of 1995 (“Act”) is the governing law that regulates mineral resources development in the country. One of the primary objectives of this act is to revitalize the ailing Philippine mining industry by providing fiscal reforms and incentives and maintaining a viable inventory of mineral reserves to sustain the industry through the infusion of fresh capital through direct investments to finance mineral exploration and/or development activities. The original implementing rules and regulations of the Act was prepared in 1995, and was revised in 1996 under DENR Administrative Order 96 – 40, the revised implementing rules and regulations (RIRR).

Collectively, the Act and its RIRR take into considerat…