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Friday, 27.04.2012

Measuring programme started

Research and fitness are not mutually exclusive.

The automated probe measurements at the LakeLab are not up and running yet. It all still has to be done by hand. Once a week, therefore, IGB technician Marén Lentz makes a trip to measure various limnological parameters in the experimental cylinders.

The two measuring probes used to take depth profiles twice a week in the experimental cylinders at the LakeLab are pretty heavy, Marén Lentz tells us. She is standing on a floating aluminium ring, slowly lowering a so-called multiparameter probe down to the lake bed some 20 m below: "So I've got my fitness programme already!"



On today's measuring excursion, Marieke Soeter accompanies the IGB technician. The young Dutch woman has just started her doctoral work at IGB Stechlin. She monitors the computer on which the measured values are immediately displayed. Every few centimetres, the multiparameter probe communicates the water quality at the respective depth. It simultaneously measures the temperature, oxygen content, pH, turbidity, electrical conductivity and redox potential.


After the multiparameter probe comes the pigment probe. Marén and Marieke take depth profiles with this as well. The second probe measures the chlorophyll content of the water – a measure of the amount of algae suspended in the water – and can also distinguish up to four algal groups.




Once the automated probe measurement is installed, no one will have to make the trip to the LakeLab anymore. Then, the measuring probes will take depth profiles in each enclosure several times a day and send the data directly to the lab via fibre optic cable. Until then, however, it's biceps training once a week for the researchers.

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