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Researchers monitor bay conditions via ferry

July 31, 2015--The ferry serves a dual purpose: as it carries commuters and tourists across the bay, it measures water quality parameters like temperature, salinity, dissolved oxygen and chlorophyll, as well as atmospheric properties like pressure, temperature, humidity and wind speed.

According to Dana Veron, associate professor of geography in the University of Delaware’s College of Earth, Ocean, and Environment, sea breezes serves a greater function than just cooling a lifeguard’s brow. When the sea breeze blows, it cools the coast and often drives insects away from the beaches. It also alters wind speed and direction, affecting conditions crucial for generation of electricity via wind power.

Veron is investigating what atmospheric and marine factors influence sea breeze, and how researchers can predict when sea breeze will occur.

“Ultimately, the ability to predict sea breeze presence could help us forecast how and when wind turbines, clean sources of renewable energy, will produce the most and the least energy,” said Veron.