Data Parameter Explanations - Real-time Water Data

The Aquarius Reporting Tool displays locations that monitor and record environmental data including automated continuous and manually collected data. Descriptions of parameters available in the Aquarius Database are listed below:

 

Long Name

Short Name

Units

Field Visit/Manual Measurement

Automated Continuous

Air Temperature

TA

oC

N

Y

Air Temperature (Secondary)

TA2

oC

N

Y

Snow Scale Temperature

TAS

oC

N

Y

Discharge

Discharge

m3/s

Y

Y

Groundwater Level

SGWL

m

Y

Y

Height of Gauge (River Stage)

Stage

m

Y

Y

Snow Water Equivalent

SW

mm

Y

Y

Snow Water Equivalent (Secondary)

SW2

mm

Y

Y

Snow Water Equivalent (Tertiary)

SWS

mm

Y

Y

Water Temperature

TW

oC

Y

Y

Cumulative Precipitation

PC

mm

 

Y

Snow Depth

SD

cm

Y

Y

Specific Conductance

Sp Cond

uS/cm

Y

Y

Turbidity

Turbidity

ntu

Y

Y

Relative Humidity

RH

%

N

Y

 

Air Temperature (TA): The temperature of air measured electronically in degrees Celsius. Air temperature is typically measured at the province’s Automated Snow Weather Stations (ASWS) as well as at some hydrometric stations.

Discharge: The amount of water flowing through a stream, river or creek at any given time. Discharge is typically measured in units of cubic meters per second.

Groundwater Level (SGWL): The depth (in metres) measured down from the ground surface to the water level in a well. The larger the value the lower the water level in the well.

Height of Gauge (River Stage): The height of the water above a set reference level. The river stage is related to discharge but not equivalent and more information (i.e. a ratings curve) is required to calculate discharge from river stage.

Snow Water Equivalent (SW): A measurement of how much liquid water is being stored in the snow-pack at a particular location. It can be thought of as the theoretical depth of liquid water (in mm) if the entire snow-pack were instantaneously melted. SW values are obtained by taking the weight of the snow pack over a snow scale or snow pillow.  The Province’s Automated Snow Weather Stations (ASWS) are able to automatically submit hourly and daily SW data while other sites require field visits.

Water Temperature (TW): the temperature of water measured electronically in degrees Celsius at observation wells and river monitoring stations.

Snow Depth (SD): the depth of any snow present, measured in cm. The Province’s Automated Snow Weather Stations transmit hourly data, while the Manual sites require monthly field visits.

Cumulative Precipitation (PC): the amount of accumulated precipitation measured in mm in a device like a tipping bucket or a pipe.  This value will continue to climb until the device is emptied.

Turbidity, ntu: Turbidity is the cloudiness of a fluid caused by suspended solids which can be used as an indicator to monitor water quality. NTU stands for Nephelometric Turbidity Unit and signifies that the instrument is measuring scattered light from the sample at a 90-degree angle from the incident light.

Specific Conductance: Measures a fluids ability to transmit electrical current which is related to the amount of ions in the water.