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The Science

Housed in the Waka are five sensors, including pH, Temperature, Conductivity, Dissolved Oxygen and Turbidity, with room for two more sensors installed. Our upgradable sensor options include Nitrate, Chlorophyll and Flow Rate.

New Zealand Environmental Water Quality Monitoring with Real Time Io T Artificial Intelligence Water Monitor RW

Water Quality Parameters

Learn more about water quality indicators, including water changes to be aware of, what can cause changes, how to prevent water degradation, and more.

PH2

pH

pH testing reflects water health, ensuring drinking water is safe. If we drink water that’s too acidic or alkaline, we can disrupt the body’s balance and develop harmful bacteria, viruses, and fungi.

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Temperature

Temperature

Temperature data means monitoring thermal loading or discharge and determining changes in the thermocline that affect the health of aquatic organisms.

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Conductivity

Conductivity

Conductivity measures the water’s ability to conduct electricity which also indicates what is dissolved in water. Conductivity changes can indicate a discharge of pollution entering the waters.

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Dissolved Oxygen Sensor

Dissolved Oxygen

Dissolved oxygen indicates an aquatic resource’s ability to support aquatic life. Low dissolved oxygen levels threaten fish and aquatic organisms’ survival.

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TR2

Turbidity

The turbidity sensor tests solids in water by how much light that passes through and relays that information in real-time. Turbidity readings can indicate potential pollution and degradation.

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TR2

Suspended Solids

Suspended solids are the amount of particulate matter in water. Particles can include algae, organic matter, clay and other inorganic substances like minerals, salts and metals.

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TR2

Chlorophyll

High chlorophyll (the green pigment found in plants) indicates high nutrient levels, specifically phosphorus and nitrogen, leading to algal blooms if left unchecked. Waters with excessive nutrients indicate low water quality.

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TR2

Flow Rate

Flow rate sensors are either submersible or mounted above the river and used to measure the discharge rate and volume. Flow rate sensors work by measuring water level and/or water pressure to show the discharge rate.

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TR2

Nitrate

High nitrate levels can cause excess algae and plant growth, which is a risk to aquatic life. Excess nitrates cause eutrophication. When excessive nutrients get into water bodies and cause excessive plant growth, this depletes water oxygen levels.

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PH2

pH

pH testing reflects water health, ensuring drinking water is safe. If we drink water that’s too acidic or alkaline, we can disrupt the body’s balance and develop harmful bacteria, viruses, and fungi.

Learn More

Water Quality Monitoring Updates

The RiverWatch blog is the data centre for New Zealanders committed to monitoring and enhancing our waterways. Learn more about the water quality of New Zealand and our integral connection with the waters, and stay up to date with important news, research and developments.