Public Lab Research note

Barnraising 2016 at LUMCON: Resources for Landfill Researchers

by sarasage | November 11, 2016 05:38 11 Nov 05:38 | #13696 | #13696

Barnraising for Trashy People

Are you a landfill researcher/advocate who couldn't make it to LUMCON for the Barnraising? No problem! Just think of this as your very own gossip column.

Below is a hand-picked list of resources, ideas, starting points and topics discussed that have applications for landfill researchers and advocates:

Passive Particulate Dust Monitoring

We discussed the Passive Particulate Dust Monitoring Project and its goal to develop low-cost PM10 and PM2.5 data collection and analysis methods. Data gathered from monitors can be used to track and measure “hot” spots, as well as map particulate plumes near stationary sources of pollution.

EPA modeling/regulation favors a regional approach which has a twofold effect:

  • Protects the largest population possible - human health on a regional scale
  • Does not assess or determine source of contaminants and therefore, makes it easier to mask sources of pollution

What we did and discussed:

  • How the cost of optical equipment currently used by EPA for advocates and citizen scientists is often prohibitive
  • Challenges of sample collection, such as how static electricity can prevent particulate matter from settling onto the test screen naturally
  • Construction of collection equipment (substitution of machine-cut steel for 3-D printed ABS) and methods to make the technology more affordable to replicate
  • Preparing slides to analyze the screens from field samples
  • Taking an inventory of smudges, scratches, particles, etc. so that they can be factored out when particulate matter is inventoried/measured on the slide sample
  • How to calibrate a microscope to the software, Fiji, in microns
  • How you can measure particulate matter manually in Fiji -- and can be tweaked for automated analysis







Tools For You:

(November 10, 2016)

Share Your Local Project With the World

There was a lot of discussion regarding how to make the Organizers group more diverse, more involved. Potential organizers may be working on a project, new to the PL community, but need a starting point.

"Without the invitation for you to share, there’s an assumption that this site is for technologists. And if we leave ambiguity in what is being invited, then it still defaults to that. What is the thing that people get from becoming an organizer, for example? Many people who we would like to become organizers are already doing a thing. If we say, 'that thing you do is so amazing, can we help you post it for your own community.' And as a byproduct, it offers resources that other groups can see." -Jeff Warren

In development is an interactive map for the PL website which can be navigated to view projects from other Public Labbers, making it easier to connect with others in your region.

Tools for you:

(November 10, 2016)


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