Chicagoland Skywarn

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About APRS and the CWOP

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Automatic Packet Reporting System (APRS) can be used to track mobile stations' positions using GPS. In addition, amateur Radio operators nationwide use APRS for reporting and tracking severe weather conditions. Any station with a home weather station can connect it to his/her APRS station and automatically transmit weather conditions.

All you need is a TNC, a VHF transceiver, and inexpensive weather measuring equipment to get your station up and running! Of course, if you just want to receive the APRS reprots on 144.39 MHz FM from other stations you can do that too... REAL TIME! CWOP station reports are relayed to the National Weather Service over the air via digipeaters and the receive nodes connected to the internet.

Instructions for configuring your own station
APRS TNC settings explained (you shouldn't be using RELAY or WIDE anymore)
APRS Depot Forum
Weather Watch CWOP/APRS Forum
Northern Illinois APRS

Citizen Weather Observer Program (CWOP)

The National Weather Service has over 6,000 automated radio stations submitting weather reports from across the country every hour via the Citizen Weather Observer Program.

Join the CWOP
More CWOP Information
Illinois CWOP Stations reports
Wisconsin CWOP Stations reports
Indiana CWOP Stations reports
Latest APRS activity map (please wait 25 seconds to load, click on an icon for info. WX=weather every 15 mins.)

 WX Reports in Vicinity of Callsign:
 WX Reports Near Zipcode:

UI-View (Software) Help

UI-View is amateur radio's most universally used APRS and weather watcher program. The program is a free download and has many useful add-ons. You can now download FREE, highly detailed maps using the PA7RHM Map Plug-in.

Chicagoland Map and INF file (copy both to C:\Program Files\Peak Systems\UI-View32\MAPS)

You can also use UI-View to display overlayed weather warning boxes on the maps above. First, you need to download and install the shape files. Then open File--> UI-NWS.

WXSvr Product Codes

Xastir (Software) Help

Xastir is the best APRS program for Linux and Mac users. The program is a free download and also has many useful features. Xastir has integrated Tiger maps from the US Government, radar overlays, and much more. Why choose Xastir? Linux is a rock solid operating system that doesn't have the rebooting, crashing, and virus issues like Windows. If you have an extra computer laying around, think about converting it to Linux using Debian or Ubuntu and setting up your own APRS station.


Peet Brothers Weather Station
Davis Weather Station
TAPR/AAG Weather Station