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RII track 2 Idea

Bill McDowell from UNH identifies a big limitation in environmental work (at least the kind that he does) is the lack of a cyberinfrastructure that gets data from field sites to the investigator. Things like sensors deployed along rivers, soil CO2 monitoring systems, soil temperature, moisture, weather stations, all send data to loggers, but then the investigator has to physically go to the logger and see if it has worked for the last several weeks. Having CI to the last mile, i.e. getting data streams onto the web for an investigator to check online, would provide a huge boost in efficiency and productivity as well as reduce data gaps and improve data quality, thereby facilitating whole new research ventures. The private/public cloud would then allow for researchers (even commerical agencies) to use the real-time data to address commercial and safety issues, like soil saturation to better predict flooding, river flows to better monitor rafting conditions in the tourism space and the examination of regional conditons to identify climate change markers. Bill imagines a VT, NH, ME effort to get environmental monitoring linked real-time with his existing collaborators.

Would this be an interesting project within our NECC domain to build CI as we have considered?

Bill's Contact data is:

William H. McDowell

Professor of Environmental Science

Department of Natural Resources and the Environment

Presidential Chair

Director, NH Water Resources Research Center (

170 James Hall

56 College Rd.

University of New Hampshire

Durham, NH 03824

Phone (603) 862-2249; FAX (603) 862-4976