AUTOMATION CONSIDERATIONS Economically feasible? Technically feasible? Operationally feasible? How much will it cost to augment the NMHS infrastructure to support an automated network (e.g. training, telecommunications)? What data parameters are required? Can automated systems provide the data to the required standards? Do human observers carry out other required duties at the site? Will automation reduce staffing requirements? AretheAWS robust and suitable for the operating environment? What is the capital cost of purchasing and installing the equipment? Will automated observations meet regulatory requirements and international commitments? How much will it cost to operate the station (e.g. maintenance, power, communications)? Does the site have reliable electric power and telecommunications? Have clients been fully consulted to determine whether automated observations meet their data needs? Does the NMHS have the capacity to maintain the system to acceptable up-time standards? How much does it cost to carry out human observations? Is it feasible for maintenance staff to travel to the site or are there local sources of maintenance services (e.g. private companies, other government agencies)? If automated observations are less expensive, how long will it take to repay the capital investment? Is site security acceptable (e.g. protection from vandalism, flooding)?