10 July 2008 Calibration of the Boltwood Cloud Sensor
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Abstract
The commercially-available Boltwood Cloud Sensor couples a sky-facing non-imaging thermopile operating in the 8-14 micron range with an ambient air thermometer, to determine the relative sky temperature, and thus indicate the presence of cloud. A Boltwood sensor was installed on the Liverpool Telescope's weather mast on La Palma in the Canary Islands in September 2006 in order to investigate its response to both thick and thin cloud at both low and high (cirrus) levels. An additional aim was to investigate the detectability of calima (Saharan dust) that is occasionally blown over the islands. In this paper we present the results of our investigations, presenting correlations between the observed temperature differential and photometricity as determined from the observation of photometric standard stars, and give some useful "rules-of-thumb" for others considering using such devices.
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Jonathan Marchant, Robert J. Smith, Iain A. Steele, "Calibration of the Boltwood Cloud Sensor", Proc. SPIE 7012, Ground-based and Airborne Telescopes II, 70123U (10 July 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.789072; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.789072
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