The citizen science model of collecting data, like we are employing with LoVoTECS, is growing in popularity. A large group with a solid organizational structure, organizers, and motivated partners can gather more information efficiently together than a small group of experts can. More scientists are recognizing this and building novel projects that answer important scientific questions. Here are links to some other examples and stories about citizen science. I hope you enjoy.
A writeup about a Hudson River group here.
A list of large-scale citizen science projects here.
A highly successful bird research group from Cornell here.
I will be speaking at the Japanese Geoscience Union about the LoVoTECS project on May 20th, focusing on the citizen science aspect for building our extensive hydrologic database. The session is on the new era of 'big data' - I hope to share our experiences collecting extensive data with a large group of partners. Stay tuned...
Friday, March 8, 2013
University of Tokyo Chiba Experimental Forest
Thanks to the Center for the Environment at PSU, I had the opportunity to travel to Tokyo to work with Mark on my thesis in January. Mark is there on a Fulbright Fellowship until July. While I was there, I gave a presentation on the LoVoTECS network. Citizen Science is a new concept of which many of the students and professors were not familiar. They had many questions about how the networked functioned and were "envious" about how much data we are able to collect through our network. So, I wanted to extend my gratitude in participating in such a novel study! Here are just a few of the highlight pictures!
|Wonderfully fresh and adventurous Sushi!|
|Undergrad, Graduate, PhD and Post Doc Students|
They were extremely welcoming, gracious and entertaining!
Thursday, February 14, 2013
On a recent and very familiar "no direct route from here to there" drives through New Hampshire, I couldn't help but practically lean my head out of the window to admire the cascading waters along the way. In fact, I pulled over at a few spots to snap these pictures to share. I marveled at ice and snow rimmed streams with water flowing over anchor ice, glorious shades of blue and green, snowcapped river rock and sheer sheets of ice covering entire streams. It made me wonder...what's going on with all of the streams and rivers in the LoVoTECS network across the state? If you are heading out to check on your sensors, grab your camera and capture a few photos and share them with us using the "pics" folder in dropbox.
Tuesday, January 29, 2013
The two graphs below display the conductivity and temperature profiles for a few rain events in December. The event that began on 17-December fell as liquid precipitation (rain) the later event of 21-December switched between snow and ice then ended as rain. What's really interesting to see is how quickly the conductivity profile in the stormdrain increased as solids are washed into the drain from the street during a rain event. As more water flows into the stormdrain, the solids that were flushed from the street are diluted and the conductivity decreases. The stream also initially responded with an increase in the conductivity profile but the response time was delayed and not nearly as drastic. Notice the highest value displayed in the top graph is 2000uS/cm and the bottom graph is 12,000uS/cm.
So what does 12,000us/cm mean? For a point of reference, sea water has a specific conductance of ~50,000uS/cm and a sports drink is around 2,500uS/cm, regular tap water is 500-800uS/cm.
Also, notice that the warmer temp of the water in the stormdrain drastically decreases as colder surface water pours in from the street, it then rebounds to above 10°C. Air temperature is not shown on these graphs but the water temperature in the stream is much more stable and is closely tied to daily fluctuation of air temperature.
Thursday, January 24, 2013
Monday, December 10, 2012
The two graphs above show water level height and percent new water that entered each river during Hurricane Sandy on October 30, 2012. The Israel River's peak in water composition lagged behind the peak in water level by 4 hours and 12 minutes. Keene's Beaver Brook, lag time between peaks was only 42 minutes. One hypothesis for this difference is that urban surfaces are less permeable than most of the surfaces which they replace, so rain has less interaction with soils in urban surfaces. Check back for other comparisons. I will be running analysis and posting new graphs.
|Hobo U24 Datalogger configuration in Blanchard Brook pool|
|Left-Right: Hobo U24 Datalogger, YSI 85, Oakton EC 11+|
Early in November, we installed LoVoTECS Hobo Water Level and Conductivity Loggers in a small stream called Blanchard Brook in Walpole, NH. The loggers were installed as part of a quality control group to study the variations among the dataloggers. The installation method differs from the rest of the network, in that five conductivity loggers and one water level logger were deployed in a one foot section of a pool in Blanchard Brook. The loggers are collecting data points every minute rather than every three or fifteen. Each data set will be compared to identify variations among individual loggers. Since we’ve been observing the electrical conductance of Blanchard Brook, the average conductivity range has been between 100 and 200 us/cm.
In addition to the comparison of the individual units, we are also capturing field conductivity readings using two styles of field meters and collecting a grab sample at the time of the field readings to note the variation between field, lab and the datalogger values.
Following the deployment in Blanchard Brook the logger group will be moved to Claybrook in Plymouth to make the same observations. Claybrook has an average conductivity range from 30-60 us/cm. Finally the loggers will be placed in a series of three standards to test their accuracy against the known solutions in a controlled environment.
Stay tuned to the blog to follow the progress and results of the Quality Logger Group.