Report of GTS Expert Team missions to African countries
L Zerbib ( RSMC/Reunion) & H Karanja (KMD )
09/21/2005 to 10/05/2005
REPORT OF THE WMO EXPERT TEAM MISSION FOR ON-SITE ASSESSMENT FOR UPGRADING/STRENGTHENING NATIONAL GTS COMPONENTS OF TANZANIA NMC
TECHNICAL SURVEY OF THE CURRENT IMPLEMENTATION AND OPERATION STATUS OF THE NATIONAL GTS COMPONENTS INCLUDING:
Message Switching System and/or Workstation:
Dar es Salam Headquarters :
AMSS Messir COM system .
. Description of the System :
Due to the decision to shift all the operational activity in meteorologie from the Airport to the headquarters , the AMSS was also transferred .
The AMSS of Dar es Salaam is a standard MESSIR-COM installed in 1998 and configured as followed :
Two Intel-based servers in hot stand by mode. I
Pentium processor, 64 MB RAM
2 x 4 GB Disks
Smart PCI/ISA add – on boards for multport handling
Automatic or manual change – over units, to switch lines from pilot server to stand by
Line interfaces as modems, routers, satellite receivers,
UNIX System V
MSS Application programs
Communications Protocols :
TCP/IP (ftp, telnet)
X25 Level 3 ( PVCs and SVCs)
Chart Codes Supported :
ii. Current Status of the System:
Although the system is still operational, the use of this system is very limited:
Little modification on the configuration is impossible without payment to the Corrobor Company. For example this Company quoted US$70,000 for the integration of 6 automatic weather stations on the AMSS !!
It has been not been possible to connect the new MSG stations to the AMSS.
Connection to Internet, which requires change the network address, is quite impossible without requesting a new license Key.
The age of the system (7 years) increases the risk of breakdown of the Hardware and explains that the version of the software is too old to be supported.
2. GTS links
Dar- es- Salaam is connected to the GTS through a leased line with RTH Nairobi a 9600 bits/s. The line is analogue and has experienced several breakdowns over the years. The protocol used is TCP/IP,
Contract with telecom carriers :
The NMC has contracted three firms for Telecommunications namely TTCL, University of Dar-es-Salaam and Alldean Satellites LTD
the performance of leased lines operated by TTCL is poor.
Monthly re-currying costs for leased lines is US$ 1,300, normal telephone lines is approximately US$ 2,800
GTS related satellite-based components :
Since the breakdown of the pseudo-modems the MDD systems was not connected to the AMSS. For this reason the MDD which is quite old is still located at the Airport The system is at present not in use due to a problem of license Key on the MESSIR VISION workstation which is connected to it.
The SADIS system has also not been shifted to the Headquarters. This System is also not connected to the AMSS, which is a problem since the other Airports of Zanzibar, and Kilimanjaro needs this aeronautical information.
The new MSG station is not also connected to the AMSS and encounters as in the others places a lot of brakdowns .
Number of operators and their working system :
Five (5) operators work on 24 hours shift. Their duties include;
Collection of observations of the country by radio telephone
Typing in the messages on the AMSS
Retyping the messages received from the Airport.
Plotting the charts manually.
Tools for link watch and logging
All of the tools are included in the MESSIR COM AMSS software:
The software offers:
Real time and non real time data reception monitoring.
Real time links supervision
Dar es Salaam headquatters : radio-telephone data colletion equipement
ational communication interfaces with national entities:
All the national data collection is operated by the operator in duty at the headquaters .
A long list of observations are collected by radio telephone and typed on the Messir Workstation .
The use of the cellular concentration system of 10 automatic wheather stations is not operationnal due to the cost and to the fact that it's not connected to the AMSS and impose to retype also the messages . This system is used at present as a backup of the radio telephone concentration .
As said above , Internet is also used to receive some messages from the Airport but still impose a manually integration on the AMSS .
The following diagram exposes the architecture of the national telecommunication network .
: TELEGRAPHIC LINE
: SINGLE SIDE BAND RADIO TRANSCEIVERS
Leased lines are operated by local PTT. The overall performance of these lines is poor.
Dar ES Salaam Central Forecast Office (CFO), RTH Nairobi and Kilimanjaro International Airport (KIA) would soon be connected through VSAT Technology.
Connection capability :
The Headquarters are connected to Internet at the very low speed of 32 kbits/s . The ISP is University of Dar es Salaam .
The airport of Dar es Salaam is also connected to Internet with AFSAT provider .
There are no firewall installed .
IP address allocation :
Only one IP adress :126.96.36.199 was allocated . The domain name is meteo.go.tz .
Segregation from the GTS :
Due to the age of the AMSS , but also due to the lack of security no Internet facility exists on these system.
Nevertheless Internet is used to exchange information between the Airport and the headquaters . Metar , upper messages are sent by email and retyped on the workstation of the MESSIR by the operators .
Configuration with the IP addressing scheme:
3 independent LANs exist in the headquarters.
One is dedicated to the GTS is a subnet of the network of the KMD. The MSG computers use another Class C LAN. The last one with dynamic address allocation is dedicated to offices for Internet connectivity.
^ The network for Internet experiences a lot of problems of virus attacks. This means that the level of security by the service provider is not sufficient. Due to lack of security on the office network connected to Internet it has been decided to not connect the operational computers as AMSS and MSG. By the time of this report, a consultant had already been engaged to propose a solution to improve the security of the Network.
Number of technicians and/or outsourced support (e.g. Contracts) :
The equipment maintenance is in the Technical services division. The division has five people who are in charge of maintenance. They however need further training in computer and information technology. 2 people of IT division may also support them if necessary. Most of the technical work is contracted to a private company.
Technical skill :
-Advanced diploma in electronics and telecommunications (1 )
-Full technician certificate in electronics and Telecommunications (4)
In accordance with TWI routing tables the messages of headers WEIO23 PHEB and WEIO40 RJTD should be received. However, on checking of the routing tables of the AMSS of Nairobi, it was revealed that the header WEIO40 RJTD is not relayed to Dar-es -Salaam. This explains that the messages are therefore not received.
It was noted that messages are currently NOT received through the GTS – this needs urgent attention
Electrical supply condition :
The Electrical power supply is from the 220-240 Vac. No central UPS exist. Most systems are on individual UPS
Either in the very new buildings of the headquarters or in the Airport , generators are automatcallly started in case of power cut .
Telephone network, cellular phone network and data network providers
TTCL for leased lines ans public telephone .
CELTEL for the cellular phone .
There are many ISPs but the Internet at the NMC is provided by University of Dar-es-salaam .
IDENTIFICATION OF AND SPECIFICATIONS FOR HIGHEST PRIORITY UPGRADES NEEDED FOR URGENT STRENGTHENING OF NATIONAL GTS COMPONENTS TO MEET IO-TWS INTERIM PHASE REQUIREMENTS, I.E. RECEPTION AND USE OF IO-TSUNAMI WATCH MESSAGES AND RELATED-INFORMATION;
The following has been considered, as the highest priority needs
The replacement of the old AMSS present in the Headquarters.
The installation of a RETIM Africa Reception system.
The improvement of the Internet Connectivity and the integration of the Internet facility in the AMSS.
The connection to the AMSS to all the reception systems (MSG, SADIS, RETIM ...etc)
Reception and handling of IO-TWS warnings and information :
Before the leased analogic line between Nairobi and Dar es Salaam will be replaced , it's proposed that The CMRS will relay also the warning messages to Dar es Salaam by automatic email dissemination .
There is a need to improve the interface for production and the method of dissemination of the Tsunami warning information to the office of the Prime minister. This message is at present sent to the Office of the prime minister in its raw state.
Tidal gauge data :
The Tanzanian sea level network consists of two operational stations at Zanzibar and Dar es Salaam. Zanzibar has a satellite transmitting station while Dar es Salaam has a mechanical float gauge. There are also four non-operational tide gauges at Mtwara, Tanga, Latham Island and Pemba. Of all the tide gauge stations in Tanzania, the Zanzibar station has been operating quite well since 1984;
Routing dictionary should be updated in Nairobi to send information on tidal gauges in real time.
Software for processing of tidal gauge should be added to the visualisation software.
^ Tanzania operates seismic stations for the monitoring of national (local) seismicity. This system is operated by the University of Dar Es Salaam (Geology Department) and the Geological Survey of Tanzania.
The seismic data are not available in real-time. It is planned to make the data available in real-time within the next two years ;
It has been recommended by to implement a 3 component broad-band seismic station close to Dar es Salaam (less than 50 km) and send the data to the national tsunami warning center (radio-modem);
There is a plan to install 8 VSAT systems in the most important stations of the country. These systems would allow regional collection of the meteorological data. It is strongly
Recommended that priority be given to the coastal stations of Pemba, Tanga, Kilwa or Mutwara if they have no other way to be connected to the AMSS of Dar es Salaam. With the Installation of a new AMSS, the use of Internet should be recommended as much as possible to send and collect the regional data by email.
RTH Message Switching System and Workstations
Duplicated MSS (PC based) with automatic changeover. The system should have the following specifications:
TCP/IP ftp communication software to RTH Nairobi.
ii. Forwarding and receiving messages in the form of email and fax
iii. Forwarding messages to at least five terminals through leased line, dial-up, FAX and SMS.
iv. Forwarding messages to two local printers.
v. Message switching software, including
Automatic relay of messages to connected circuits/terminals/printers selectively according to a routing table which can be easily updated,
Manual relay of messages to connected circuits/terminals/printers selectively,
Compilation of observational reports according to fixed lists of stations at scheduled times,
Input of a message on key board and sending it to selected circuits.
vi. Audio/visual alarm on reception of any messages identified by their abbreviated headings.
vii. Data storage should be available for at least one week.
viii. UPS for thirty minutes at least in case of power failure.
ix. A router with two WAN interfaces.
Estimated COST FOR PURCHASE AND INSTALLATION OF MSS INCLUDING RETIM AFRICA RECEIVER AND TRAINING IS AROUND USD 120000.
NMC GTS links
The analogue leased line between Dar es Salaam and Nairobi should be replaced by a VSAT link. This would reduce recurrent costs and bring a substantial increase of the speed from 9.6 kbits/s to 64 kbits/s.
NMC GTS related satellite-based components
The installation of a RETIM Africa system in Dar es Salaam is recommended to replace the old MDD system which cannot be connected anymore to the AMSS .
Possible national data-communication components (e.g. provincial centres)Presently problems are encountered due to radiotelephone breakdowns. It is recommended that data collection centres be set up to collect regional data, which is then transmitted to the headquarters for forecasting and injection into the GTS.
The Dar-es-salaam airport- Headquarters link should be implemented with a wireless connection at the 5Ghz licence free frequency band which can transmit strong signal over a range of more than 20 Km. A similar link should be used to transmit data from the Automatic weather station at the airport to the airport office.
These are the recommendations for the International Airport of Dar es Salaam :
-Improving the link whith the headquarters by using a wireless connection .
-As soon as the Internet connectivity of the Headquarters is obtained cancel the contract whith AFSAT .
-Shift the SADIS system from he Airport to the headquarters and connection of this equipment to the AMSS in order to offer aeronautical data to the others international airports .
-Install a wireless connection with the Upper air station .
-Obtain from Corrobor the license Key for the MESSIR VISION System .
-Connect the AFTN to the AMSS using a leased line with Headquarters .
We have noted that :
Concerning the Tsunami hazard , there is currently no National Platform for Disaster Reduction but it is planned to be developed .
Tanzania has established the Tanzania Disaster Relief Coordination Committee (TANDREC) as a national body; and the Disaster Management Department in The Prime Minister’s Office which coordinate all disasters in the country;
Tanzania has not established a National Tsunami Warning and Mitigation Coordination Committee as such. However TANDREC is responsible for all disasters in the country therefore including tsunamis. It is the intention to establish specific technical committees for specific disasters eg tsunamis;
There is a requirement to automatically forward Tsunami Warning messages and related information to the TANDREC . It is also required that to send these warning messages to the coastal stations . For the dissemination to the TANDREC, it is important that the information be sent directly from the AMSS . The system of alert concerning the warning should be improved and also be implemented in the new AMSS. The warning messages should be archived and a warning transmission log generated for reference.
Training and capacity building are needed to fulfil requirements for operating and maintaining MSS and related equipment. It is recommended that training be arranged on UNIX, Linux, AMSS hardware and software and operation of the system for the system engineers/technicians and operators.
E. When developing the project, special attention should be given to the impact on recurrent costs in order to facilitate sustainable operation, e.g. priority given to satellite-based components (such as RETIM-Africa, EUMETCast);
F. Preliminary administrative coordination with a view to the implementation of the project.
General Director of the Tanzanian Meteorological Agency
Mr. Dan Jones
Deputy Director of the Tanzanian Meteorological Agency
Telecom carriers and vendors who was contacted on this mission to seek suggestions for possible upgrade of telecommunication capabilities of the Met. Department and for cost estimates:
Alldean Satellite Networks Kenya ltd was contacted in order to have a quotation of VSAT links and for Internet connectivity .
Mr Michel Pousse
Meteo France International (M.F.I.)
9 rue Michel Labrousse
Tel: +335 6143 2940
Fax: +335 6143 2941
Email : Michel.Pousse@mfi.fr
Mr. Erick Nuwendam
Corobor Systèmes, Vitry, France
Tel: +33 1 45 73 60 60
Add document to your blog or website