DIY Water Monitoring, Data Portals, and Watershed Modeling

September 10 - 12, 2019

Location: Stroud Water Research Center | Avondale, PA


Scott Ensign
Stroud Water Research Center
Shannon Hicks
Stroud Water Research Center
David Arscott
Stroud Water Research Center
Chet Udell
Stroud Water Research Center


Low-cost, do-it-yourself electronic microcontrollers, sensors, and actuators have revolutionized hydrologic research. Along with the possibilities for customized wireless communication and prototype construction, scientists are gaining an unlimited capacity for designing customized hydrologic measurement equipment. This workshop will introduce participants to two internationally-utilized DIY programs in low-cost, open-source water science: and the OPEnS Lab Project Loom. The objective of the workshop is to expose participants to a range of options in DIY hardware, software, and prototyping systems, thereby highlighting factors that users should consider when seeking a DIY program to their research.

Participants will build and deploy microcontrollers, sensors, and actuators and many commonly asked questions, troubleshooting steps, and diagnostic procedures will be covered in this hands-on curriculum. The sensor data collected by participants will be immediately available online, thereby enabling a hands-on tutorial on data portals and visualization. Finally, participants will be introduced to a variety of online data management software and hydrologic modeling programs.

This workshop will appeal to hydrologic researchers wanting 1) an introduction and hands-on tutorial to data logger programming in the Arduino environment; 2) advanced training on connecting, programming, and troubleshooting DIY data loggers and related water monitoring sensors; 3) an introduction to data portals and online tools for watershed and water quality modeling.

Eligibility and Requirements

No prior experience is needed, but familiarity with Microsoft Excel is a must.