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PROJECT JAR:Jefferson Acid Rain Project

Dr.Michael J. and Dr.Virginia C. Demchik

Sixty-seven volunteers from our classes participated in project JAR. Acid rain was collected during the month of October, 1996, according to a specific protocol.The methodology utilized includes collecting rain water in a glass jar lined with a ziploc bag and held in place by a rubber band.

The jar must be at least three feet off the ground to avoid any splash back. The jar must also be kept out of the rain shadow of the home and of the trees in the area. This means that the jar must be kept at least as far away as the object is high. The jar must also be kept out of low lying areas and way from streams.The time for collection is 6:30 to 7:00 AM each day and brought to school in an effort to maintain the same temperature at which it was collected. On weekends the acid rain collected is placed in a glass jar in the refrigerator and brought to school the following Monday. The data collected for the month of October is shown in the following table.


DATE/OCTOBER pH # SITES REPORTING
03 5.0 09
08 4.4 33
09 4.7 51
11 4.5 42
18 4.4 21
19 4.9 41
20 4.4 30
22 4.4 29
26 4.5 39
29 4.5 01
10 4.5 28 average

The average amount of rain during this time period .41 inches per day with 10 days of rain at pH 4.5 with 28 sites reporting on the average. The normal rainfall has a pH of 5.6. The acid rain is a little over ten times stronger than normal rainfall. Collections of this nature provide a good deal of information about the watershed in the area and also provide some information about stream pH. Acid snow was collected in February. The project reported the protocol and procedure as it is collected.


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