Monitoring is an important part of any study of eutrophication, and in NORDBALT ECOSAFE we are exploring the use of the relatively novel method of monitoring by sensors. A water quality monitoring sensor is a device that can monitor a set of parameters frequently and in real-time. The sensors can be placed in streams, lakes, groundwater wells, or coastal waters. In our policy brief we list advantages and challenges with sensor monitoring and give examples of sensor use. Note that the brief is produced in several languages.
One of our aims is to enhance the citizen awareness on water quality matters by offering real-time access to a set of sensor data in stream monitoring stations. Check out our interactive map: Where you find a yellow star, you may click on that star, and you will be taken to a site showing real-time data from that stream. You can also access the data from links in our fact sheets, found below.
It is very important to understand that on-line data have not yet been quality controlled. This means, that before we use the data for research or management purposes, we have to go through them and ‘clean up’ any incorrect or suspicious data. Such errors can occur for many reasons, some of these are listed below:
The figure below shows some examples of such typical errors. Commonly, we keep the original data series, but replace it with one where the suspicious data have been removed, unless we can find an explanation of these data. Despite of such potential errors in the sensor dataseries, we believe that displaying real-time data to citizens will be of value, also because the local inhabitants may have other explanations to some of these anomalies.
NORDBALT ECOSAFE is working towards common procedures for quality assuring sensor data, and a PhD student at AU is presently writing a paper on an automated quality control tool. The tool is expected to be available on-line, in open access, later this year. The developments will be posted at this web site.
Station name: Hågaån
Station name: Lepsämänjoki
Station name: Leppioja