National Weather Service Caribou Station History

In 1937 weather ballon launches began at Caribou Municipal Airport. They continued from the airport until 1944, when the airport hanger burned down in 1944. The weather service temporarily moved to the Aroostook Inn until the new hanger was completed in 1945.

In the 1940s and 1950s several new instruments were installed at the weather office. In 1949 a pyrheliometer, an instrument that measures direct solar radiation, was installed on the hangar roof. In 1958 equipment to measure the ozone was installed, and now Caribou is one of only six stations in the country that measures ozone levels. Weather balloon launches continued during this period, providing meteorological data for forecasting, and for Loring Air Force Base.

In 1966 a new building was built for the Weather Service in order to keep the office from moving to Presque Isle. In the early 60s, for a breif time, equipment to track the Explorer VII satellite was installed at Caribou.

In the 1970s and 1980s the Caribou weather office continued to expand services. In 1982 the Caribou weather office begain to transmit weather forecasts on NOAA weather radio. New (AFOS) communication computers was installed to insure that the National Weather Service office at Caribou had the latest data available. Also, an automatic weather balloon tracking system was installed in 1984.

In the 1998 Caribou was chosen to be full-fledged National Weather Service Forecast Office. This will lead to a rapid period of expansion of services and personnel. To read more about this click here.

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