[aprssig] APRS to the planet rescue?

Robert Bruninga bruninga at usna.edu
Mon Apr 3 09:56:19 CDT 2017


Here's a project.  Add a $4 Methane detector to your APRS mobile and help
us find the bad methane leaks.  Google is adding it to their maping cars.
Maybe Amateur Radio and APRS could help?

https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/#inbox/15b2521854ccaa63


Apparently the 2:1 advantage of replacing the high carbon emissions of coal
with natural gas, overlooks the fact that the methane released with natural
gas extraction methods is 84 times worse than carbon as a green house gas
and may more than offset any advantages.

Just one methane leak a few years ago did more damage than about a million
cars a day before it was plugged months later

.
http://www.businessinsider.com/methane-gas-leak-porter-ranch-los-angeles-disaster-largest-in-history-2016-1

Anyway, a $4 sensor and a tiny processor could add a flag to our mobile
packets somehow  when levels exceeded some background level



Though I am not sure if the sensitivity of these $4 sensors is good enough
to find the outdoor area low level leaks, or only detects high
concentrations...

I wish I had the time to make one and experiment with the concept.  It
would make a great fun project. I used to thing a cheap radiation detector
would let APRS contribute to plotting radiation hot spots, but I fear the
natural gas leaks and fracking damage is going to kill us first.

My thoughts on adding this to APRS is to simply have a processor send out a
modified STATUS text when a detection is made.  Since APRS was designed
around the status being merged-on-receipt with the most recent posit, this
is a way of nailing down the location of high methane levels or leaks.

Status could simply be >CH4=XXX where XXX is the reading.  Format of XXX
will be determined to  give reasonable scale over expected detections.
Then the APRS map could selectively plot any detections.

Anyone have more experience with these sensors and the levels of detections
expected?

Bob, wb4apr
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