Nutrient Monitoring System
Excess nutrients, also known as eutrophication, can appear seasonally, after an upwelling of nutrient-rich water, or from human-introduced sources such as fertilizer runoff, feedlot waste, urban stormwater runoff and wastewater treatment plant discharge. Watersheds increasingly struggle to handle resulting nutrient loads and suffer adverse effects such as harmful algal blooms (HABs), red tides, fish kills, and decreased productivity. Better understanding of nutrient loads and mitigation can be achieved in part through automated, real-time monitoring systems.
Typical Nutrient Monitoring System
An effective nutrient monitoring system should provide real-time measurement data not only at the body of water subject to harmful algal blooms, but also along tributaries that transport nutrients through the watershed when possible. By measuring at multiple locations, point sources can be located and predictive modeling can be developed to provide advanced warning when the conditions are right for HABs to propagate.
While sensors may be placed on buoys in some situations, hydropower dams generally lend themselves to structure-mounted installations where the sensor is placed into a perforated deployment pipe that allows flow to the sensor for accurate measurement. The sensor may be secured at a fixed position within the pipe and easily removed from the water for maintenance and calibration.
Contact a NexSens Applications Engineer today to discuss your nutrient monitoring application.
The Oklahoma Water Resources Board is a governmental agency that looks to protect and improve the quality of life for the state’s citizens through managing Oklahoma’s water resources. That mission is achieved through many means, including providing financial assistance where needed, granting permits and monitoring water quality in reservoirs.Read More
Because of its location in an agricultural watershed, a ditch in Minnesota’s Blue Earth County was retrofitted with a weir to help control discharges of excess nutrient and sediment loads. Curious to see what effects the new construction had on conditions downstream, researchers at Minnesota State University set out to investigate. They began with a set of baseline data gathered between the months of April and November in 2013. These touched on the stream’s temperature, pH and dissolved oxygen levels, which they found to be increasing in a correlated way significantly throughout the day.Read More
Officials at the South Florida Water Management District oversee many stormwater treatment areas as part of their mission to manage and protect water resources in southern Florida. Those include many constructed wetlands, some with aquatic vegetation and some without. Because the effects of aquatic vegetation on nutrient transport in wetlands are relatively unknown, scientists with the Management District set up monitoring equipment to learn more. Their investigation looks specifically at the role that wind plays in wetland nutrient transport, given the presence or absence of vegetation.Read More