At Home Meteorological Experiments

If you are trying to entertain the kids at home or are just looking for a meteorological experiment then you've come to the right place!

First up we have the Cloud in a Bottle experiment:

• 1 large clear-plastic bottle with a screw-on top (e.g. a 3-litre juice bottle)
• 1 match
• 1 cup of water

Step 1. Pour the water into the bottle, put the top on and shake it around. Leave it for a few hours so that the air in the bottle gets very humid. (You can do the word find below while you wait)

The Physics of Fog

While the weather conditions that lead to the formation of fog are usually quite benign, fog itself can be very disruptive. In particular the aviation and marine industries are often interested in how fog or mist will affect the visibility for their journeys, though fog also affects road-users.

Forecasts in retrospect: A history of Numerical Weather Prediction

As weather forecasters, here at MetService we spend a lot of our time poring through data: data from weather stations, data from satellites and radar, from weather balloons and also webcams. This information is all useful for understanding what the weather is doing right now – but how do we know what might happen in the future? Understanding the current weather helps us understand what might come next, but information from numerical weather models also plays a very important part.

What is a heat wave?

You’ve probably heard the phrase ‘heat wave’ bandied about in the news, and perhaps wondered what exactly it means. Does one hot day constitute a heat wave? And how hot is hot? Does New Zealand really get that many heat waves? If you’ve ever found yourself wondering about these things, then look no further!

The science of drying - how to be a clothes line ninja


Hanging washing on the line may not be the most life-dependant use of MetService forecasts when compared to farming, electricity generation or adventuring into the mountains.  However, significantly more of us do it, and the environmental, economic and health benefits add up. Clothes line and weather forecast users have every right to be proud of their skill and bravery in drying clothes outside in New Zealand’s changeable weather.

Vanuatu’s Volcanoes

In recent years the islands of Vanuatu have been showing signs of increased volcanic activity. The New Zealand Metservice plays an important role in the monitoring of these volcanoes, as they are the Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC Wellington) for the region, one of only 9 centres around the world as shown in the map below.