As part of our analysis of the MMSK stream's health, students completed formal lab reports for various water chemistry parameters, including dissolved oxygen, conductivity, pH, nitrates, carbon dioxide, etc. Following are copies of these reports.

DrewHLabreportCONVERTEDINTOAPICTUREPART1.jpg
DrewHLabreportCONVERTEDINTOAPICTUREPART2.jpg
DrewHLabreportCONVERTEDINTOAPICTUREPART3.jpg

Next (the untitled picture), is a lab report on E-Coli by Samuel Armsrong.
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How Does Proximity to a Tributary Affect Conductivity Levels in the MMSK Stream? Lucie Heerman

May 10th, 2011

I. Purpose

This lab investigated the conductivity levels of nine locations in the Montessori Middle School of Kentucky stream, including the origin of the stream on MMSK property and two tributaries to the stream.
II. Background
Conductivity is a measure of the ability of water or another liquid to transmit an electrical current. The ability to conduct electricity is determined by the presence of inorganic dissolved solids in the water, such as sodium, calcium, and iron. Other determining factors include the valence and temperature of the water. Conductivity is usually measured in micro-ohms (ohms) per centimeter or microsiemens (uS) per centimeter. As identified by the Kentucky River Watershed Watch, the healthy level of conductivity for Kentucky streams is lower than 800 ohms/cm, though each individual body of water has its own normal range.

III. Materials
A meter designed to test conductivity
Paper
Writing utensil
Calibration solution
Purified water
Small container
Map of stream being surveyed Thermometer
A stream or other body of water

IV. Procedure
1. Choose five to ten locations along the length of the stream you will be testing, including any tributaries. Mark these on your map for future reference.
2. Assemble all materials needed.
3. Calibrate your meter according to the included instructions.
4. Take the temperature of the air and record it on your paper.
5. Go to the first location (the farthest downstream) on your map, taking all supplies but those used only to calibrate the meter with you.
6. Take the temperature of the water and record it.
7. Remove the electrode cap from the meter, placing it within reach.
8. Turn the meter on by pressing the on/off button.
9. Submerge the whole electrode in the water, taking care to ensure that it does not touch the bottom.
10. Wait a minute or so to allow the meter to stabilize.
11. Look at the small screen on the side of the meter and note the measurement.
12. Replace the electrode cap.
13. Collect all supplies and move upstream to your next location.
14. Repeat steps 6-13 on your remaining stations.
V. Data.
5-May



6-May


Weather
Station #
Result

Weather
Station #
Result
cool, right after rain
1
830 uS

cool, dry, sunny
1
910 uS

2
840 uS


2
960 uS
Air temp
3
890 uS

Air temp
3
870 uS
18.5 degrees C
4
910 uS

18 degrees C
4
1000uS

5
970 uS


5
1000 uS
Water temp
6
1000 uS

Water temp
6
1050 uS
15 degrees C
7
980 uS

15 degrees C
7
1010 uS

8
990 uS


8
1000 uS

9
950 uS


9
1040 us







9-May



10-May


Weather
Station #
Result

Weather
Station #
Result
warm, dry
1
950 uS

hot, sunny
1
940 uS

2
960 uS


2
950 uS
Air temp
3
1000 uS

Air temp
3
980 uS
24 degrees C
4
1010 uS

22.5 degrees C
4
900 uS

5
1060 uS


5
980 uS
Water temp
6
1040 uS

Water temp
6
950 uS
20 degrees C
7
1110 uS

19.5 degrees C
7
1020 uS

8
1070 uS


8
980 uS

9
1020 uS


9
1050 uS

VI. Analysis


VII. Conclusion
The hypothesis for this experiment was that testing locations closer to the tributaries or origin would have higher conductivity levels than those farther away, due to the substances coming through the pipes. This was correct, as when the values were averaged, the site farthest away from the tributaries had the lowest levels (910 uS/cm.) The location with the highest conductivity levels was the second tributary, with an average reading of 1030 uS. This test could have been improved by taking more tests and testing at regular intervals along the stream. The stream’s conductivity did not fall within a healthy range even one time, almost certainly due to the dissolved solids flowing in through the tributaries. In order to lower the levels of conductivity during the stream’s rehabilitation, wetlands complete with thick vegetation should be created at the mouths of the tributaries. These will help to remove the unwanted substances from the water through filtration.