fDOM Data Aids Water Quality Restoration in Everglades Stormwater Treatment Areas

fDOM data correlated to DOC grab samples

The in-situ fDOM sensor on the EXO sonde is a relatively inexpensive, high-resolution proxy for dissolved organic carbon concentrations. These data from SFWMD show extremely strong correlation between the two measurements.

With decades of residential and agricultural growth, the levels of phosphorus, nutrients and other pollutants entering the Everglades ecosystem is on the rise. The South Florida Water Management District has undertaken a number of programs to protect the ecosystem and achieve better water quality, including a series of Stormwater Treatment Areas (STAs or constructed wetlands).

SFWMD tested an EXO sonde in one of the STAs and Michael Kirkland, Scientist, reports the results:

“Freshwater samples were taken in Stormwater Treatment Area (STA) 1 West, upstream of remotely operated water monitoring stations. Water coming from Lake Okeechobee, as well as agricultural areas (some of the primary Dissolved Organic Matter sources to this system), is fed into the STA, which treats excess nutrients in the water through vegetative root uptake and other natural processes before it is ultimately released into Florida’s water conservation areas and the Everglades.

“We are interested in DOM upstream of the system, internal DOM movements (floc, sediment, etc.), as well as effluent DOM concentrations.

“We are very happy with the results we obtained from the EXO. I specifically compared fDOM readings against collected Dissolved Organic Carbon samples. The graph shows an extremely strong correlation between the two measurements, which is what we were hoping for. That being said, I am recommending that SFWMD purchase at least one of these units.”

A Closer Look at fDOM Measurement:
Listen to web presentation on examining fDOM measurements in surface water using YSI’s newest smart sensor.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *