How hot does it get inside your car?

Recently I said to someone

“I believe the scientific basis of global warming is very simple: if you put more heat (energy) into something than comes out, the temperature will go up. A commonly shared experience we can all relate to is getting into your car on a 90-degree day only to find that the inside temperature is around 120-degrees, due to the trapped heat.”

I wanted to check my statement about the 120 degree Fahrenheit (48.9 degree C) temperature inside the car to see if it was true.  I used a small automated weather station to get the inside and outside air temperatures and an infrared thermometer to measure surface temperatures.  Here is what I found (in degrees C):

12:15 PM, Location Mayaguez, Puerto Rico, Sept. 22, 2014, 2001 Honda Accord, Black.

Air temperature outside 31.6 C

Air temperature inside car 49.1 C (My statement was very close!)

Surface temperatures inside car: Dashboard 88.9 C (192 F  !!!!), driver seat 50C, front floor 39 C, Radio 51.6 C, steering wheel 53 C, trunk floor 56.9 C.

Pavement outside of car 52.1

Grass area near car 33.9

My office chair 17.7 C.  :-)


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Today a new weather station was installed in the Finca Alzamora, UPRM campus, Mayaguez Puerto Rico.  Data from the weather station are available from two websites:  WeatherLink  or WeatherUnderground.  The WeatherUnderground site allows you to download archived data in a coma delimited text format that can be imported into Excel.  Data being collected include:  air temperature, dew point temperature, RH, wind speed and direction, solar radiation, UV index, soil moisture tension and soil temperature.  A value of the reference evapotranspiration is available on the WeatherLink page.  We are still working out a few kinks, but should have it running smoothly within a few days.



The weather station was purchased with funds from the UPRM NOAA CREST Project.

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New Book Series on Micro Irrigation just Published

Research Advances in Sustainable Micro Irrigation

Click to download pdf flyers

Vol. 1. Sustainable Micro Irrigation Principles and Practices

Vol. 2.  Sustainable Practices in Surface and Subsurface Micro Irrigation

Vol. 3. Sustainable Micro Irrigation Management for Trees and Vines

Vol. 4. Management, Performance, and Applications of Micro Irrigation

Vol. 5. Applications of Furrow and Micro Irrigation in Arid and Semi Arid Regions



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Leverage Points For Improving Global Food Security And The Environment

We Have Enough Land To Feed Our Growing Population, We Just Have To Use It Right, Study Finds

Click here for summary of study

Click here for journal article in Science



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PRAGWATER now providing daily reference evapotranspiration for St. Croix, USVI

Daily reference evapotranspiration (ETo) is now available for St. Croix (USVI) at the following link: Northern Caribbean ETo .  The link also includes ETo data for Puerto Rico, Hispaniola and Jamaica.

Yesterday’s Reference Evapotranspiration in St. Croix

The following links will provide guidance on scheduling irrigation using the ETo map data.

Harmsen E.W., 2012.  TECHNICAL NOTE: A Simple Web-Based Method for Scheduling Irrigation in Puerto Rico.  J. Agric. Univ. P.R. 96 (3-4) 2012.

A simple irrigation scheduling tool for using ETo maps

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Syria: An example of climate change-induced war

Trying To Follow What Is Going On In Syria And Why? This Comic Will Get You There In 5 Minutes.



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This Invention Will Change The World, Just Watch




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Climate Change Impacts in the United States – final report

Download report pdf                  Go to Report website



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Nigerian girl describes kidnapping, among 50 who escaped

Originally posted on theGrio:

LAGOS, Nigeria (AP) — The girls in the school dorm heard the sound of gunshots from a nearby town. So when armed men in uniforms burst in and promised to rescue them, at first they were relieved.

“Don’t worry, we’re soldiers,” one 16-year-old girl recalls them saying. “Nothing is going to happen to you.”

The gunmen commanded the hundreds of students at the Chibok Government Girls Secondary School to gather outside. The men went into a storeroom and removed all the food. Then they set fire to the room.

“They … started shouting, ‘Allahu Akhbar,’ (God is great),” the 16-year-old student said. “And we knew.”

What they knew was chilling: The men were not government soldiers at all. They were members of the ruthless Islamic extremist group called Boko Haram. They kidnapped the entire group of girls and drove them away in pickup trucks into the dense forest.

Three weeks later, 276…

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What is more horrible? #BringBackOurGirls


Excellent article. Let’s get our priorities straight.

Originally posted on Rhea Harmsen:

On a scale of one to ten, what is more horrible than the kidnapping of little girls to be sold into sexual slavery in order to scare folks into not sending girls to school?

How should we react to that? Is it as important as sanctioning a country for the invasion of another? Is it as important as searching for a plane that has disappeared at sea? Or rescuing miners trapped in a mine?

There are problems in the world that are important. Other problems that are urgent. The international community has to decide where to direct its focus, it’s condemnation and it’s resources. The press can either shine it’s light on festering wounds or create distractions.

Then there are problems that are BOTH hugely important and desperately urgent. So much so, that they merit the full weight of our attention. How long will we drift on the wings…

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