Aachen weather pillar - Aachener Wettersäule

The Aachen weather pillar on the skyscraper at the main train station

The Aachen weather pillar is a light pillar in the city of Aachen , which is used to display the current weather forecast . [1] It is the only weather pillar of its kind in Germany [2] [3] and is a tourist attraction and modern landmark of the city of Aachen.


The model for the Aachen weather pillar was the Weather Star on the roof of the 26-story MONY skyscraper built in 1950, 1740 Broadway, New York City , [3] which is no longer used to display the weather forecast. [4] In 1956, the Aachen entrepreneur Pongs commissioned such a weather display for Aachen, in 1958 it was completed and handed over to the city of Aachen. [5]

At the beginning of the 1970s there were several failures of the weather pillar, which is why it was switched off from 1974 to 1977. In 1977 the Stadtwerke Aachen (STAWAG) took over the pillar from the city, [6] repaired it and put it back into operation. In 1983 the weather pillar was again extensively restored, and the remote control was also renewed. In 2008 a larger number of fluorescent tubes were replaced again. [5] In the fall of 2018, the column was two months out of service, all the fluorescent lights were meanwhile displaced. [6]


The weather pillar is on the roof of the high-rise wing of the Grenzwacht building , a municipal administration building at the main train station . It is 11 meters high and thus reaches a height of 40 meters above the station square or 222 m above sea level. NHN . It is therefore easy to see from many parts of the city. The column has a metal frame with a shaft and a ball sitting on it. A total of 180 fluorescent tubes are attached to the metal frame to display the weather forecast, to the shaft in white and to the sphere in the three colors white, yellow and blue. On LED-Technique has so far been dispensed with for reasons of color fastness. The column is in operation for about 4100 hours per year and consumes about 1000 kilowatt hours. [5]


Weather pillar in operation
Weather pillar with display in white

The weather forecast for the next day is displayed by the luminous color of the sphere and various time sequences of the luminescence of the sphere and shaft. The display is controlled by the network control center of Stadtwerke Aachen , the data comes from the German Weather Service in Essen . The column is switched on at dusk and switched off again after sunrise. In the display means: [1]

at the ball:
  • blue light: clear to cloudy, dry
  • yellow light: overcast to cloudy, without precipitation
  • white light: precipitation (rain or snow)
  • Continuous light: constant weather tendency
  • Flashing light: inconsistent weather tendency
at the shaft:
  • rising light: temperature rises
  • falling light: temperature is falling
  • constant light: temperature stays the same

In total there are 3 × 2 × 3 = 18 different combinations that can be displayed.


Commons : Aachener Wettersäule - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. a b Our weather pillar. In: www.stawag.de. Stadtwerke Aachen, accessed on March 26, 2019 .
  2. Unlike other weather pillars, it is not used to record meteorological measured values, but to display the weather forecast for the coming day.
  3. a b Weather pillar in Aachen is being renovated. In: wdr.de. Westdeutscher Rundfunk, November 21, 2018, accessed on March 26, 2019 (with video).
  4. ^ David W. Dunlap: No More MONY in the Midtown Skyline. In: City Room. February 4, 2008. Retrieved March 26, 2019 (American English).
  5. a b c d Robert Esser: Weather column put out of action. In: Aachener Nachrichten . October 11, 2018, accessed March 26, 2019 .
  6. a b The weather pillar lights up again. In: Aachener Nachrichten . December 20, 2018, accessed March 26, 2019 .

Coordinates: 50 ° 46 ′ 7 " N , 6 ° 5 ′ 28.2" E