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Automatic measurement network

SwissMetNet, the automatic measurement network of MeteoSwiss, comprises about 160 automatic stations with a full measurement program. These stations deliver a multitude of current data on weather and climate in Switzerland every ten minutes. The network is supplemented by automatic precipitation stations (about 100 stations). Together, these stations form the basis for the creation of reliable local weather forecasts as well as severe weather and flood warnings.


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SwissMetNet project

Over recent years, MeteoSwiss has modernised and expanded its ground-level measurement network. SwissMetNet now comprises about 260 automatic stations. These stations deliver a multitude of current data on weather and climate in Switzerland every ten minutes. The data are  automatically transmitted to the MeteoSwiss central database, where various quality assurance checks are performed. The stations' measurement programs vary according to their respective purpose. Standard stations measure continuously temperature, humidity, atmospheric pressure, solar radiation and the amount of precipitation as well as the wind direction and speed.

The automatic measurement network is equipped with high-precision measurement instruments and state-of-the-art communication technology. With Switzerland's complex topography and possible harsh weather conditions, developing and operating such a measurement network represents a particular challenge

Precipitation measurements

As a meteorological parameter, precipitation exhibits a very high spatial variability and requires therefore a denser measurement network. MeteoSwiss thus operates about100 additional stations for the automatic measurement of precipitation. MeteoSwiss also has a network of observers who manually measure daily precipitation. The manual precipitation network comprises 250 locations. The automatic precipitation measurement devices transmit their data every ten minutes.

Precipitation measurements in Valais

Due to its complex topography, the canton of Valais is working together with MeteoSwiss and the Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research (WSL) with the specific objective of improving the information base for precipitation events. For this reason, the canton of Valais has invested heavily in the expansion of the automatic precipitation measurement network and has given the mandate to MeteoSwiss to install around 35 measurement stations within Valais. The high spatial resolution of the precipitation measurement network allows for improved flood forecasts.