The Solar Radiation Sensor, or solar pyranometer, measures global radiation, the sum at the point of measurement of both the direct and diffuse components of solar irradiance. The sensors transducer, which converts incident radiation to electrical current, is a silicon photodiode with wide spectral response. From the sensors output voltage, the console calculates and displays solar irradiance. It also integrates the irradiance values and displays total incident energy over a set period of time.
The outer shell shields the sensor body from thermal radiation and provides an airflow path for convection cooling of the body, minimizing heating of the sensor interior. It includes a cutoff ring for cosine response, a level indicator, and fins to aid in aligning the sensor with the suns rays. The space between the shield and the body also provides a run-off path for water, greatly reducing the possibility of rain- or irrigation-water entrapment. The diffuser is welded to the body for a weather-tight seal; it provides an excellent cosine response. The transducer is an hermetically-sealed silicon photodiode; the included amplifier converts the transducer current into 0 to +2.5 VDC. Spring-loaded mounting screws, in conjunction with the level indicator, enable rapid and accurate levelling of the sensor.
Each sensor is calibrated against a secondary standard which is calibrated periodically against an Eppley Precision Spectral Pyranometer in natural daylight.