The center acquires water quality data through an array of probes located at three locations in Kimages Creek, which flows through the center, as well as in the James River.
The probes provide continuous measurement of a wide array of parameters, including dissolved oxygen, pH, conductivity, salinity, temperature, tidal cycle, turbidity and chlorophyll concentration.
Several meteorological stations provide continuous information on standard weather parameters. These data are made available through our website.
Aquatic Mesocosm Facility
The Aquatic Mesocosm Facility consists of 24 500-gallon tanks that can be filled directly from the James River. The use of river water with its native bacterial, algal and animal communities allows VCU researchers to perform experiments under natural conditions. The results of these experiments provide a more rigorous basis for assessing the effects of water quality conditions on living resources than can be attained through solely monitoring their abundance in the river. Upcoming experiments include studies of nutrient and light effects on the incidence of harmful algae in the river and the role of filter-feeders in controlling algal biomass.