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Archive: 2021
  • Corrosion and Performance of Dust Palliatives: Laboratory and Field Studies

    Abstract: This report details laboratory and field experiments on BioPreferred® dust suppressants to assess performance and corrosion characteristics. Numerous bio-based dust suppressant products are marketed, but little data are available to assess performance for dust abatement and corrosion of common metals. A laboratory study used an air impingement device and the Portable In-Situ Wind ERosion Laboratory (PI-SWERL) to simulate wind speeds similar to those in field conditions for rotary wing aircraft. Laboratory corrosion studies used metal coupons imbedded in soil treated with dust palliative. Field trials were conducted using ground vehicle traffic to minimize cost and lower safety concerns while increasing surface wear from repetitive traffic. These studies clearly show that bio-based products demonstrate low corrosion potential with similar dust abatement performance to synthetic-based agents.
  • Incorporating Sentinel-1 SAR imagery with the MODIS MCD64A1 burned area product to improve burn date estimates and reduce burn date uncertainty in wildland fire mapping

    Abstract: Wildland fires result in a unique signal detectable by multispectral remote sensing and synthetic aperture radar (SAR). However, in many regions, such as Southeast Asia, persistent cloud cover and aerosols temporarily obstruct multispectral satellite observations of burned area, including the MODIS MCD64A1 Burned Area Product (BAP). Multiple days between cloud free pre- and postburn MODIS observations result in burn date uncertainty. We incorporate cloud-penetrating, C-band SAR-with the MODIS MCD64A BAP in Southeast Asia, to exploit the strengths of each dataset to better estimate the burn date and reduce the potential burn date uncertainty range. We incorporate built-in quality control using MCD64A1 to reduce erroneous pixel updating. We test the method over part of Laos and Thailand during April 2016 and found average uncertainty reduction of 4.5 d, improving 15% of MCD64A1 pixels. A new BAP could improve monitoring temporal trends of wildland fires, air quality studies and monitoring post-fire vegetation dynamics.
  • An Evaluation of Soil Phosphorus Storage Capacity (SPSC) at Proposed Wetland Restoration Locations in the Western Lake Erie Basin

    Abstract: Historical loss of wetlands coupled with excess phosphorus (P) loading at watershed scales have degraded water quality in portions of the western Lake Erie Basin (WLEB). In response, efforts are underway to restore wetlands and decrease P loading to surface waters. Because wetlands have a finite capacity to retain P, researchers have developed techniques to determine whether wetlands function as P sources or sinks. The following technical report evaluates the soil P storage capacity (SPSC) at locations under consideration for wetland restoration in collaboration with the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) and the H2Ohio initiative. Results indicate that the examined soils display a range of P retention capacities, reflecting historic land-use patterns and management regimes. However, the majority of study locations exhibited some capacity to sequester additional P. The analysis supports development of rankings and comparative analyses of areas within a specific land parcel, informing management through design, avoidance, removal, or remediation of potential legacy P sources. Additionally, the approaches described herein support relative comparisons between multiple potential wetland development properties. These results, in conjunction with other data sources, can be used to target, prioritize, justify, and improve decision-making for wetland management activities in the WLEB.
  • Methods for Simultaneous Determination of 29 Legacy and Insensitive Munition (IM) Constituents in Aqueous, Soil-Sediment, and Tissue Matrices by High-Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC)

    Abstract: Standard methods are in place for analysis of 17 legacy munitions compounds and one surrogate in water and soil matrices; however, several insensitive munition (IM) and degradation products are not part of these analytical procedures. This lack could lead to inaccurate determinations of munitions in environmental samples by either not measuring for IM compounds or using methods not designed for IM and other legacy compounds. This work seeks to continue expanding the list of target analytes currently included in the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Method 8330B. This technical report presents three methods capable of detecting 29 legacy, IM, and degradation products in a single High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) method with either ultraviolet (UV)-visible absorbance detection or mass spectrometric detection. Procedures were developed from previously published works and include the addition of hexahydro-1-nitroso-3,5-dinitro-1,3,5-triazine (MNX); hexahydro-1,3-dinitroso-5-nitro-1,3,5-triazine (DNX); hexahydro-1,3,5-trinitroso-1,3,5-triazine (TNX); 2,4-diamino-6-nitrotoluene (2,4-DANT); and 2,6-diamino-4-nitrotoluene (2,6-DANT). One primary analytical method and two secondary (confirmation) methods were developed capable of detecting 29 analytes and two surrogates. Methods for high water concentrations (direct injection), low-level water concentrations (solid phase extraction), soil (solvent extraction), and tissue (solvent extraction) were tested for analyte recovery of the new compounds.
  • Summary of Collaborative Wildlife Protection and Recovery Initiative (CWPRI) Conservation Workshop: Least Bell’s Vireo

    Abstract: This special report summarizes the regional workshop held 24–26 April 2018 at the US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) Ecological Services Office in Carlsbad, California on the importance of collaboration among federal, state, and nongovernmental agencies to facilitate the recovery of threatened and endangered species (TES). This workshop focused primarily on one species, the least Bell’s vireo (LBVI), and how to achieve full recovery and eventual delisting through agency partnerships. A major theme of the workshop was applying the Endangered Species Act (ESA) Section 7(a)(1) conservation planning process as a building block towards recovery of LBVI—as well as other threatened, endangered, and at-risk riparian species within the Southwest. The main objective of this workshop was to assemble an interagency and interdisciplinary group of wildlife biologists and managers to detail how the Section 7(a)(1) conservation planning approach, in consultation with the USFWS, can assist in the recovery of LBVI primarily on federal lands but also other public and private lands. Goals of this workshop were to (1) review Section 7(a)(1); (2) outline LBVI ecosystem processes, life history, threats, and conservation solutions; and (3) develop and organize agency commitments to collaborative conservation practices.
  • Atlantic Sturgeon Movements in Relation to a Cutterhead Dredge in the James River, Virginia

    Purpose: This technical note describes a field study investigating the movements of federally endangered Atlantic sturgeon, Acipenser oxyrinchus oxyrinchus (ATS), during the summer and fall of 2017 near a cutterhead dredge working in the James River, Virginia, to provide data addressing the concern about the potential impacts of dredging activities (for example, excavation, transit, disposal, sounds, reduced water quality) on the ATS.
  • Observation of Silver Carp Spawning in a Mississippi River Tributary

    Purpose: This technical note seeks to better understand spawning cues of invasive carp for management and control purposes.
  • Autonomous Transport Innovation: A Review of Enabling Technologies

    Purpose: This document is the first of the technical note series under the Autonomous Transport Innovation (ATI) research program. The series intends to be an introduction on autonomous vehicles (AVs), their testing, and associated infrastructure. A review of technologies that enable vehicle autonomy is necessary to provide the basis for understanding vehicle performance in testing scenarios and in actual use.
  • Autonomous Transport Innovation: The Regulatory Environment of Autonomous Vehicles

    Purpose: This technical note series under the Autonomous Transport Innovation research program is intended to be a primer on autonomous vehicles (AVs), their testing, and associated infrastructure. A review of the regulatory environment for autonomous vehicles is necessary to define rules imposed on technology or operations of autonomous vehicles in various capacities. Acknowledging such regulation will aid in productive closed-course site development by structuring the course based on what autonomous vehicle developers and manufacturers must program their vehicles to adhere to in a given setting.
  • Environmental Life Cycle Assessment on CNTRENE® 1030 Material and CNT Based Sensors

    Abstract: This report details a study investigating the environmental impacts associated with the development and manufacturing of carbon nanotube (CNT)–based ink (called CNTRENE 1030 material) and novel CNT temperature, flex, and moisture sensors. Undertaken by a private-public partnership involving Brewer Science (Rolla, Missouri), Jordan Valley In-novation Center of Missouri State University (Springfield, Missouri), and the US Army Engineer Research and Development Center (Vicksburg, Mississippi), this work demonstrates the environmental life cycle assessment (ELCA) methodology as a diagnostic tool to pinpoint the particular processes and materials posing the greatest environmental impact associated with the manufacture of the CNTRENE material and CNT-based sensor devices. Additionally, ELCA tracked the degree to which optimizing the device manufacturing process for full production also changed its predicted marginal environmental impacts.