Resources: National Instruments

A small, portable data-acquisition device is a key tool for a team of meteorological scientists gathering data on tornados for the past 10 years. They have devised a 600-lb probe that they place in the path of oncoming tornados to record measurements of temperature, humidity, pressure, sound, and wind. The portable DAQ consists of a 3110 industrial controller, CompactDAQ, DIAdem analysis software, and Lab- View system-design software, all from National Instruments, Austin. It replaces standalone data loggers that were plagued by limits on the sample rate and the number of data channels it could handle. The team also had difficulty comparing and correlating data from the old loggers. The portable data-acquisition device, however, can store large data sets and display the data in a usable way. The new setup easily expands to handle new sensors in the future.

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