Critical Zone Observatories

Critical Zone Observatories thumbnail Photo

Facilities & Equipment

Each observatory site is an environmental laboratory studying the chemical, physical and biological processes; includes in situ measurements, sampling, remote sensing, and more.

Description & Examples

The Critical Zone Observatories use instrumentation and campaign-style measurements to quantify the composition and fluxes of energy, water, and solutes and sediments at different spatial and temporal scales across the land-atmosphere interface. Each CZO site focuses on aspects of Critical Zone science that fit the strengths of its investigators and its environmental setting while also working towards shared goals across the network. Each CZO consists of multiple field sites within a watershed that are instrumented as well as sampled for soil, canopy and bedrock materials. A list of core and specialized measurements offered from each observatory can be found here