Photos of Department of Meteorology
at Pochentong, Phnom Penh

  • Ms. Vannareth Seth (center), the director of the Department of Meteorology under the Ministry of Water Resources and Meteorology, and some of her staffs in front of the main building.

  • The view from the entrance area (left). You see the main building in the center, the meteorological observation field on the left, and a storehouse on the right (used mainly for a power generator at present, but many years ago, used for rubber balloon preparation). In the entrance area (right), there are some tall antennae and houses for the receiver for daily weather charts from Bangkok, Tokyo, etc.

  • Some close look.

  • The view from the roof of the main building (left). The Pochenton international airport is very close. Some facilities on the roof (right). There is a GMS antenna, which was broken due to a political riot a few years ago.

  • Some surface meteorological instruments.

  • An example of the original notebook of daily surface meteorological measurements at synoptic stations (left). The Pochentong office receives the weather report from 10 synoptic stations in Cambodia every morning via SSB (center). The Pochentong office calculates some meteorological parameters and makes up an independent summary notebook for each station (right).

  • The weather chart receiver. The weather information from Bangkok, Tokyo, etc. is crucial for the daily life of Cambodian people.

  • Director Seth Vannareth is also working as a daily weather forcaster. She gathers meteorological information, runs a weather forcasting model which predicts min/max surface temperature 24 hours later at the 11 stations, makes today's forcasting sheet, and sends it to two ministers and seven TV/radio stations via fax. The weather model was constructed by a professor Pechkov from Soviet Union who stayed in Cambodia for five years to investigate the daily weather in 1961-70 and 1981-1990 and obtained some statistical relations.

  • Director Seth and Mr. Sam Oeurn Soknara took me to a Khmer restaurant for lunch. Seth studied meteorology at some universities of Soviet Union for nearly 10 years. Sam also studied in Soviet. This is the reason why they survived during the Pol Pot (Khumer Rouge (Cambodian Communist Party)) era (1970s). During the era, 290 out of 300 meteorological personnel were killed because of a political reason. At present, Department of Meteorology has about 100 staffs, but only 8 people have studied meteorology in university. Seth is planning to make a group research on "Climate in Cambodia" partly for educating the staffs of the 11 synoptic stations.


    Masatomo Fujiwara
    Environmental Earth Science, Hokkaido University, Japan