What Aspects of Air Quality will be Monitored
- Air temperature
- Net radiation
- Atmospheric pressure
- Wind speed/ Direction
The climatic data will serve as a basis for scientific comparison by establishing a baseline of climatic trends to which research such as population, breeding, diversity, and evolutionary studies can be related. All measured quantities can be used to prove or disprove correlations between climate and studied biotic trends.
Ecosystem health is an abstract quality that encompasses many facets of nature. When properly determining the health of an ecosystem, it is important to look at not only the health of its species, but also the state of its nutrient cycles. In addition, monitoring the long-term trends of climate can be used to determine if measured changes are reflective of environmental deterioration or natural fluctuations. Temperature and rainfall both have characteristic seasonal trends, and long-term variations of these trends can be indicative of El Nino phenomenon, as well as global warming and local climate shifts.
The presence of carbon dioxide will be used as an indicator of the presence of other air pollutant emissions. Thus we will be using carbon dioxide as an indicator of the human impacts of the villages on the air quality as a whole. This will also help give us a sense as to how effective our redesigns are in decreasing the human impact on air quality.
Air temperature can be monitored using a thermistor, which is a small, inexpensive temperature sensitive resistor. To give an idea of the price, one particular thermistor available online costs $6.50 (Omega Engineering 2001).
Relative humidity can be measured using a thin film capacitor, which changes capacitance in a detectable repeating fashion as relative humidity changes (Iowa Energy Center 2004).
Net radiation can be measured by using a net radiometer which is based on a thermopile sensor. These sensors create a voltage that is proportional to the net radiation (NovaLynx Corporation).
Wind speed and direction can be monitored by using a combination wind sensor which contains an airfoil vane, and an anemometer that output measurements in analogue form (Kenda.net).
Barometric pressure can be measured by using a capacitive absolute pressure sensor that uses a silicon diaphragm that changes height with different barometric pressures causing the capacitance to change (Vaisala Group 2003).
Currently there are three climate stations on the Galapagos, located in Puerto Ayora, Bellavista, and Puerto Villamil. These existing stations are run by the Charles Darwin Foundation. They monitor air temperature (minimum, maximum, and current temperatures three times per day), relative humidity, sea surface temperature, rainfall, wind direction (three times per day as well as continuously), and cloud cover (three times per day). These measurements are taken primarily by hand and then are entered into a computer via email correspondence with the Charles Darwin Research Station. The monitoring system will integrate the data from these climate stations, and add atmospheric pressure as another parameter. Climate sensing stations will be established for varying altitudes on windward and leeward sides of all islands. These stations will record data from monitoring technologies in variations in current and voltage that can then be transmitted by radio signal and interpreted by a computer into useful graphs. Pollution sensors will dispersed in and around villages, in order to monitor CO2 trends as an indicator of air pollution emissions. This will be useful in marking the progress of the rehabilitation of air quality due to the rebuilding of the villages in an environmentally friendly design.
- Iowa Energy Center. (2004). Input Devices and Sensors Part 2: Analog Devices. Retrieved November 30, 2004, from
- Kenda.net. Combination Wind Sensor. Retrieved November 30, 2004, from
- NovaLynx Corporation. 240-110 NR-Lite Net Radiometer. Retrieved November 30, 2004, from http://www.novalynx.com/240-110.html.
- Omega Engineering, Inc. (2001). AD590 Series: Solid State Temperature Sensor Models AD590J and AD590K. Retrieved November 30, 2004, from
- Vaisala Group. (2003). Retrieved November 30, 2004, from
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