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Spring has arrived in Central Illinois and the weather changes dramatically from too dry to violent storms. Be sure to check the operation of your precipitation collector even if its not raining. Speaking of collectors, the EPA-funded site reviews conducted by ATS show that about half the sites did not perform the routine sensor heater check. This check is very important. The most critical function of the precipitation collector is itís ability to burn off moisture on the sensor and to close quickly after an event. Rapid removal of water ensures that the collector is open ONLY when it is raining and helps ensure that your samples are valid. Check this mode of the sensor, called the "wet collect heater," each week.

NADP Collector Sensor Heater Check Procedure: 1) Using your finger tips or the fleshy part of your thumb, feel the plate of the sensor (the solid steel piece embedded in the black plastic, see Figure 1). IT SHOULD BE COOL as long as the collector has been closed for several minutes. 2) Place a drop of water on the lower "rung" of the sensor grid and allow the collector to open, exposing the wet-side bucket. 3) Wait 5 minutes and feel the plate of the sensor again. It should be noticeably warm to the touch with maximum temperature of ~ 140E F. If the heater is not functioning, the entire sensor must be replaced (an easy 15 minute job). Please call 800-952-7353 if you have questions.

2005 CALendar: There are still plenty of spots left! If you are interested in having your site featured in next yearís CALendar, send picture(s) and a paragraph about your site and its personnel to Sarah Milton at the CAL. Contact Sarah at (217) 333-7053 or smilton@sws.uiuc.edu if you have questions.

http://nadp.sws.uiuc.edu/cal/ E-mail: cal@sws.uiuc.edu
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Hello out there.  Summer is finally moving into central Illinois, letís hope for a cool one.

What does my SITE ID mean?
A site operator at our recent CAL Field Operations training course asked about how their station ID was assigned. They noted that it didn't seem to make sense and seemed out of sequence with other stations in the state. Each NADP site is given a 4 digit indicator. The first 2 digits (the letters) are the state code, the second is derived from an EPA air quality code book which is keyed to the county, parish, borough or air quality region which the site is in. This 4 digit identifier is used throughout the NADP database to separate and manage your data. Please be sure to fill it into each field form and on all sample bags.

2005 CALendar: There's still room for more sites in the 2005 CALendar If you are interested in having your site featured, please send photos and site information to Sarah Milton (smilton@sws.uiuc.edu) as soon as possible. Contact her with questions at 217-333-7053.


E-mail: cal@sws.uiuc.edu
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 Sensor Cleaning: Over time, the sensor grid and plate on the NADP collector may become dirty and need to be cleaned. Residue can coat the sensor and cause the lid to not open for light precipitation events. Itís good idea to take a small bottle of isopropyl or rubbing alcohol, an old toothbrush and a few paper towels to the site and use them to periodically clean the sensor. First, remove last weeks bucket and secure and store it. Next, flood the sensor with alcohol and use the toothbrush to clean between the sensor grid and plate. Finally, flood the sensor with the alcohol again, wipe dry with paper towels, and blow off any remaining liquid.

Raingage Charts: We recently received a shipment of Belfort raingage charts which use a different grade of paper than previous orders. These charts are less absorbent and operators have reported "smeary" traces which make them difficult to read. We are trying to find another supplier, but until then, you can reduce the amount of ink you use in the pen nibs and make sure the ink in the nibs is good and fresh to help ease the problem.

Foam Lid Seal Change: The NADP collector lid seal will be changed this summer. Replacements were shipped the week of June 7. The change is scheduled for July 6, 2004. Call 1-800-952-7353 if you have questions.


E-mail: cal@sws.uiuc.edu

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CAL Questions? Contact Chris Lehmann, Director
Central Analytical Laboratory - (217) 244-0868
Web Comments: E-Mail Pamela Bedient