Over the course of the past few weeks, we have been discussing the top 5 tips to prevent costly mistakes with your multiparamter water quality sondes, last week we shared tip #4, before we move on to the 5th and final tip let’s quickly review what we learned with tip #4:
- Ion-Selective Electrode based sensors should never be stored in DI water, or they will lose their potency as their internal reagents leech out into the water.
- Don’t allow pH sensors to go dry.
- Always remove batteries from sondes for storage periods longer than a month to prevent potential battery acid leakage.
- Even though sondes are tough by nature, don’t leave thousands of dollars of equipment up to chance.
OK - drum roll please, for the 5th and final “Common, Costly Mistakes” in this series:
Falling Behind in Monitoring Trends & Activities
Last and certainly not least, the final problem that we see with sondes is that groups have a difficult time keeping up with new monitoring trends. Every year research is being done across the globe on how to best measure certain parameters and how to glean additional information from the same data sets. It’s enough to make your head spin. The pace of it all is almost overwhelming, but it’s certainly exciting to see the progression of the monitoring community.
All sorts of research is occurring these days, not only on new sensors, but on surrogate measurements. Meaning how to use data we have from standard sensors like conductivity, temperature, pH, or even fDOM to calculate another parameter. fDOM readings for example, have been recently used as surrogate measurements for mercury and even dissolved organic carbon. There is some really interesting work being done with EXO sensors, to learn more about it click here to download the case study.
These types of surrogates are truly the future of monitoring as we only need a few select sensors to build a foundation of data points, from where we can make seemingly limitless conclusions. Researchers are continually building these relationships based off of comparisons between grab samples and continuous monitors out in the field, so it’s important to keep up to date with new discoveries each year.
It’s always a good idea to check out industry journals like Lakeline or USGS publications, and webinars are a great tool too. The National Water Quality Monitoring Council held a webinar on the state of nutrient monitoring and the EPA held a 2 hour digital event on the future of water quality monitoring late in 2014. Both were well worth the time invested. Subscribing to YSI's blog is another great way to keep up to date on applications from researchers and scientists.
In addition to making sure to keep up with the new research coming out from our colleagues around the globe, it’s also important to familiarize ourselves with the monitoring technologies that are at our fingertips. Our recommendation is that if you’ve purchased monitoring equipment, train yourself on what it can do for your organization and use it to its fullest potential. You may be surprised at what you can achieve with resources you already have in your back pocket.
- There are many moving targets with monitoring water quality and best practices are always evolving and new monitoring trends always emerging
- Keep up with the latest publications and monitoring applications
- Connect with YSI on our social media channels to learn more about how our equipment is used across the globe.
- Continue to educate yourself on new technologies and brush up on the capabilities of equipment that you already have in your monitoring arsenal
Continue your education now, by checking out EXO University, for on-demand water quality sonde training.
Additional Blog Posts of Interest:
5 Tips To Prevent Costly Mistakes With Your Sondes | Tip 1 of 5
5 Tips To Prevent Costly Mistakes With Your Sondes | Tip 2 of 5
5 Tips To Prevent Costly Mistakes With Your Sondes | Tip 3 of 5
5 Tips To Prevent Costly Mistakes With Your Sondes | Tip 4 of 5