The UWEC Environmental Public Health research team has begun operations in full swing for spring research. Monitoring industrial sand facilities and measuring air quality will continue on as it has, but one project is a bit different this year. The team will be monitoring air quality on the UWEC campus during the reconstruction of Garfield Ave. The project aims to ensure that particulate concentrations don't reach levels that can cause adverse health effects, as well as to determine how much of a role large machinery plays in air pollution. Garfield Ave is a road that leads through the heart of campus, and is scheduled to be removed. The project aims to make the UWEC campus more pedestrian-friendly, as well as to bring a bit more nature into the campus.
Last Monday (March 26, 2017), members of Public Lab and two active community members met to deploy air quality monitoring equipment on the roof of a building on campus. After a brief meeting to meet each other and to discuss plans, the group made our way to a rooftop that overlooks the construction site.
The map above illustrates the construction area (Red area), and the monitoring equipment that the research team deployed (Green indicator). The blue indicator represents a webcam that UWEC operates.
The location of the equipment was carefully selected, so it would get the full exposure from particulates thanks to the prevailing winds (southerly) in Eau Claire. A Dylos air monitor (DC1100 I believe) connected to a Raspberry Pi computer transmits data to an online server via an Ethernet connection. The configuration is housed in a makeshift shelter consisting of a small animal carrier with plastic taped to the top to protect against rain.
A Mobius ActionCam and Crenova Trail camera are also scheduled to be deployed near the construction area. The cameras will be used to complement the view of the webcam that the University is operating on top of Schofield Hall. Monitoring from many angles is advantageous because different vantage points